Behavior, Parasitism, Morphology, and Biochemistry of Criconemella xenoplax and C. ornata on Peach


  • A. P. Nyczepir
  • C. C. Reilly
  • R. E. Motsinger
  • W. R. Okie


Host-parasite relationships of Criconemella xenoplax and C. ornata on Nemaguard peach and common bermudagrass were determined in the greenhouse. Criconemella xenoplax reproduced on peach and reduced root volume, height, and dry stem weight after 6 months, compared with the noninfested check. Numbers of C. ornata did not increase on peach or influence peach growth, but they did reduce dry top weight and root volume of common bermudagrass, compared with C. xenoplax. Criconemella xenoplax and C. ornata produced the enzyme[beta]-glucosidase and were capable of metabolizing prunasin, but only C. xenoplax produced[beta]-cyanoalanine synthase to detoxify the cyanide released from prunasin. The apparent inability of C. ornata to detoxify cyanide is one explanation why numbers of this species did not increase on peach. Criconernella xenoplax and C. ornata can be distinguished by using stylet length, vaginal configuration, and shape of the anterior head region. Key words: Criconemella ornata, C. xenoplax, parasitism, peach, peach tree short life, Prunus persica, ring nematode.