Update: New Pest & Disease Records (17 Sep 14)

A new species of leafhopper has been identified in Brazil © Steven Severinghaus (CC BY-NC-SA)

A new species of leafhopper has been identified in Brazil © Steven Severinghaus (CC BY-NC-SA)

We’ve selected a few of the latest new geographic, host and species records for plant pests and diseases from CAB Abstracts. Records this fortnight include the  first report of Fusarium wilt in blueberry caused by Fusarium oxysporum in China, a new species of Beamerana from southeastern Brazil and new records of plant parasitic nematodes from rhizosphere of onion in Iran. 

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Update: Plant Health News (10 Sep 14)

Symptoms of cassava brown streak disease on cassava leaves

Symptoms of cassava brown streak disease on cassava leaves © CABI

Here’s a taste of some of the latest stories about plant health, including some homegrown news of Plantwise data used to study the global spread of crop pests, cassava brown streak disease wreaking havoc in Rwanda, and fireblight hitting Canadian apple orchards hard.

Click on the link to read more of the latest plant health news!
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Update: New Pest & Disease Records (03 Sep 14)

Podosphaera xanthii, commonly found on Cucurbitaceae has been identified as the causal agent of eggplant powdery mildew in Qingdao © Gerald Holmes (CC BY-NC)

Podosphaera xanthii, more commonly found on Cucurbitaceae has been identified as a causal agent of  powdery mildew in eggplant © Gerald Holmes (CC BY-NC)

We’ve selected a few of the latest new geographic, host and species records for plant pests and diseases from CAB Abstracts. Records this fortnight include the occurrence of Pectobacterium carotovorum subsp. carotovorum on banana pseudostems in the Brazillian state of Minas Gerais, fire blight disease on apricot and cherry plum in Hungary and identification of the pathogen causing eggplant powdery mildew in Qingdao, China.

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Factsheet of the month: September – Bacterial wilt management in tomatoes

Bacterial wiltLast month, SciDevNet reported on a hybrid tomato variety that is encouraging Nepali farmers back into tomato production after the majority of plantations were wiped out by storms and disease 5 years ago. The variety, known as Shrijana, is high-yielding, wilt and disease-resistant and flavoursome. The higher yields have increased farmers’ incomes, thus raising their standard of living. This has allowed more farmers in Nepal to send their children to private schools. However, Nepali scientists will continue to research new varieties as it is possible that Shrijana could become susceptible to bacterial wilt over time.

Bacterial wilt is a common and devastating disease affecting a large number of hosts including potato and tomato. It is caused by the bacterium Ralstonia solanacearum which can cause damage to host plants at all growth stages. There are a variety of control measures that have found to be effective against the disease, of which the use of resistant varieties is just one. To read more about additional control measures, read this month’s Plantwise Factsheet for Farmers which was produced by employees from the Horticultural Research and Training Institute (Horti) in Tengeru, Tanzania. Please note this factsheet is also available in Swahili.

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Citrus greening threatens Floridian groves

Symptoms of citrus greening on citrus leaf

Symptoms of citrus greening on citrus leaf © CABI

Mabel Smith is an Oxfordshire school student, studying both the arts and the sciences. She is interning at CABI for Plantwise and the marketing department.

The disease, citrus greening, which is also known as huanglongbing and caused by the fastidious bacteria Candidatus Liberibacter, continues to cause problems for Floridian growers this week. The psyllids that spread this pathogen are now running rampage throughout more than half of Florida’s citrus producing counties, causing an expected 20% decline in  harvest. Over the last 20 years around 60 million citrus trees have been abandoned across half a million acres of land due to this rapidly spreading and, so far, incurable disease. Citrus greening has already caused irreversible damage in Asia and South America and many growers in Florida are giving up on the citrus market altogether to turn to more reliable alternatives like peach growing. Despite this, many growers are still optimistic and millions of dollars are currently being invested in further agricultural research into a cure.

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Update: Plant Health News (27 Aug 14)

Soil health issues cost African farmers $4 billion a year in lost crop productivity © Gates Foundation (CC BY-NC-ND)

Soil health issues cost African farmers $4 billion a year in lost crop productivity © Gates Foundation (CC BY-NC-ND)

Here’s a taste of some of the latest stories about plant health, including surveillance robots that can detect weeds and pest insects, a focus on gender capacity development in Ethiopia and smallholder farmers in Africa adopting practices to improve their field soil health.

Click on the link to read more of the latest plant health news!
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Workshop held on future of Invasive Species Compendium

Abigail Rumsey:

The Invasive Species Compendium is a free, open access resource from CABI, providing comprehensive information about thousands of invasive species. It is great news that it has been decided to keep this resource free for at least five more years.

Originally posted on CABI Invasives Blog:

Members of the Invasive Species Consortium from the US, Mexico, Caribbean and South Pacific met in Washington DC on 4 August and unanimously agreed to keep the Invasive Species Compendium (ISC) an open access resource for a further five years. The ISC has been resourced by a diverse international consortium of government departments, development aid organizations and private companies. Consortium members agreed that work on the ISC to date was of global importance and utility, and should continue.

Invasive Species Compendium website

The Invasive Species Compendium website

The ISC is a global encyclopaedic resource that combines science-based information to support decision-making in invasive species management. Invasive species, such as non-native weeds, animals and microorganisms, are one of the main causes of biodiversity and economic loss worldwide, impacting livelihoods and human health. Since its launch, use of the ISC has continued to grow, now with over 400,000 users in 234 different countries.

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