Plant Clinics boost fight against diseases and pests

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“Plant clinics boost fight against diseases, pests” – this was the title of a story that appeared in the newspaper Business Daily last week. It was one of many positive articles that were written after a group of journalists were taken to visit some Plant Clinics in Kenya. The article includes examples where the Plant…
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Update: New Pest & Disease Records (6 Apr 11)

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We‚Äôve selected a few of the latest new geographic, host and species records for plant pests and diseases from CAB Abstracts. Click on the links to view the abstracts. Characterization of Maize chlorotic mottle Virus associated with maize lethal necrosis disease in China. Xie Li; Zhang JingZe; Wang Qiang; Meng ChunMei; Hong Jian; Zhou XuePing…
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Update: Plant Health News (23 Mar 11)

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Here‚Äôs a taste of some of the latest news stories about plant health: Switzerland: new health provisions for the import, trade and plant production Anemia, 20 March 2011 Indian Mustard May Be Alternative to Fumigation in Cotton CropBiotech Update, 18 March 2011 Taking plants to the doctor: plant health clinics from Bolivia to Bangladesh R4D…
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New Plantwise videos

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Today over one billion people are going hungry¬†every day¬†‚Ästthe majority¬†of these are smallholder farmers who rely entirely on their crops to feed their families.¬† Plantwise aims to help improve food security and reduce poverty by providing knowledge that helps farmers identify pests earlier so that they can control these pests before yields are significantly affected.…
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Update: Plant Health News (9 Mar 11)

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Here‚Äôs a taste of some of the latest news stories about plant health: Mandalotus weevil study Grains Research & Development Corporation ‚Äď Media release, 8 March 2011 Hidden fusarium threat revealed Farmers Weekly Interactive ‚Äď Arable News, 7 March 2011 Rust Never Sleeps The Official Blog of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, 3 March…
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Does rust-free rice hold the secret?

All cereals, except rice, are susceptible to rust. Wheat, maize, barley, millet, triticale, and oats all get rust. The spores of rust fungi land on a host plant, germinate, and grow toward a stomatal pore on the leaf surface to initiate infection. Rust infections produce red or yellow pustulating spores that give infected plants a…
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Fast but furious: High yielding plants linked to poor pest resistance

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Breeding plants for fast growth and high yield may make them more susceptible to pests and diseases. New research from the University of Zurich using the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana has confirmed long suspected theory, showing that when plants put more resources into growth they often shut down some defence genes.
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1000 new ‘Plant Doctors’ trained in Karnataka

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Nearly 1000 farmers in Karnataka are set to be trained as ‘Plant Doctors’ in a major programme funded by the Karnataka State Department of Agriculture and Bio-Control Research Laboratories (BCRL), part of Pest Control India Ltd. (PCI), and supported by CABI. By the end of March 2011 there will be enough trained plant health workers…
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NZ kiwifruits hit by bacterial canker

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Biosecurity New Zealand announced on Saturday that samples of New Zealand pollen have tested positive for the bacterial kiwifruit disease, Pseudomonas syringae pv. actinidiae (Psa). Results indicate that Psa may have been present in New Zealand for a number of years. The confirmation of Psa in New Zealand comes as a huge blow to the…
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Can science feed the world?

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This was the question posed by Nature‚Äôs Special recently. In other words, how can we feed the Earth’s growing population in such a way that no-one goes hungry and nature is left with some land and water of its own? Their answer can be broadly summed up by what Britain‚Äôs Royal Society call ‚Äúsustainable intensification…
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