Biofumigation - An effective tool in enhancing yield of capsicum by suppressing soil-borne pathogens and augmenting biopesticide under protected cultivation in India
Biofumigation is a benign method to control soil-borne pathogens. The scope of the current research was to develop an effective formulation of Allyl Iso-Thio-Cyanate (AITC), commonly called volatile mustard oil and to evaluate its impact on suppression of soil-borne pathogens in capsicum cultivation grown under poly-house condition. After extensive research Multiplex biotech has developed a suspension concentrate formulation for biofumigation of soil based on an extraction of brassica enzyme called AITC and defatted mustard seed meal powder which could support both soil-sterilization and boosting soil fertility. A completely randomized trial was carried out on capsicum (Capsicum annum) grown under polyhouse (one acre) condition has shown that the application of this formulation as pre-planting treatment of soil @ 500ml/acre through drip irrigation under mulched condition was found to be an effective method to suppress the soil-borne fungal pathogens (70-80%) like Sclerotium rolfsii, Fusarium sp., bacterial pathogens (50-60%) like Ralstonia sp., Xanthomonus sp. and root knot nematodes (60-70%). In addition, it also complemented biocontrol activity of microbial antagonist like Trichoderma viride and Pseudomonas fluorescens, introduced as a treatment in the biofumigated plot after a gap of 6 days of Biofumigation. Improved plant growth (>18-20%), increased number of leaves/plants, early flowering and better yield (>22-33%) was recorded in the treatment where both T. viride and P. fluorescens were introduced as post fumigation treatment. This was followed by only biofumigated plot whereas in the non-fumigated plot disease incidences recorded was highest (43-45% more). Highest yield (46 tons/acre) was recorded in the plot where biopesticide was treated after Biofumigation followed by only biofumigated plot (37 tons/acre) and as compared to non-fumigated plot (28 tons/acre) which recorded the lowest yield.
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