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Browsing articles by Khalil Al-Mughrabi

Disease Watch: Late Blight

Late blight disease caused by Phytophthora infestans devastates potato foliage and tubers. The pathogen can survive between growing seasons as mycelium in potato tubers and plant tissues, and on alternative hosts of Solanaceae family. The pathogen may also overwinter as oospores in soil. Infected tubers used for seed or discarded onto cull piles or infected volunteer potatoes are sources of infection for the new growing season. In addition to potatoes, tomatoes, eggplant,…

Dickeya: A New Threat to Potato Production in North America

The main bacteria causing potato blackleg and tuber soft rot are Pectobacterium atrosepticum, P. carotovorum subsp. carotovorum, and Dickeya spp., all formerly belonging to the genus Erwinia. Dickeya and Pectobacterium affect a number of host species including potato, carrot, broccoli, corn, sunflower and parsnip, but they do not appear to thrive on legumes and small grains. These bacteria characteristically produce a range of cell-wall-degrading enzymes that macerate plant tissues on which they…

Disease Watch

Late blight attacks both tubers and foliage. On tubers it causes dark external skin discolouration. The internal flesh of tubers tends to show reddish or tan brown, granular, internal dry rot. Depending on the length of infection, peeling of skin over the affected area and soft rot development, due to secondary infections, can also be observed. On foliage, dark, water-soaked lesions are observed on the upper surface of the leaf. Talc-like white…

Disease Watch

Potato diseases may originate in the field and spread to healthy tubers through natural or mechanical wounds, such as bruises, cracks, abrasions, or damages caused by diseases. Such wounds allow the pathogens to penetrate into healthy tubers, where they can proliferate and produce an abundance of spores or cells that can cause more infections, even under favourable storage conditions. Storage rot is difficult to manage, but there are many strategic measures that…

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