Drip Irrigation as a Delivery System for Infestation of Field Plots with Nematodes


  • J. O. Becker
  • M. Monson
  • S. D. Van Gundy
  • M. N. Schroth


A drip irrigation delivery system was used to infest field sites with the plant-parasitic root-knot nematodes, Meloidogyne incognita. Juvenile or egg inocula passed through the system without blockage of emitters or harm to the nematodes. Field sites so infested were available for experimentation. Delivery of approximately 5 x 10[sup4] to 10[sup5] juveniles or 10[sup5] to 3 x 10[sup5] eggs per emitter through the drip system resulted in heavy root galling of tomatoes planted next to the drip emitters. Nematodes feeding on bacteria (Acrobeloides sp.) and on fungi (Deladenus durus) also were successfully applied through the drip system. This method has potential for uniformly infesting experimental sites with plant-parasitic or entomogenous nematodes and for manipulation of nematode community structure for soil ecological studies. Key words: Acrobeloides sp., biogation, Deladenus durus, drip irrigation, field infestation, Lycopersion esculentum, Meloidogyne incognita, root-knot nematode.