Effect of a multispecies nematode population on the root, corm, and shoot growth of East African Musa genotypes
Mukasa, Hannington H × Ocan, David De Waele, Dirk Rubaihayo, Patrick R Blomme, Guy #
Biology and fertility of soils vol:43 issue:2 pages:229-235
A study to determine the impact of a multispecies nematode population on the root, corm, and shoot growth of East African Musa genotypes was carried out. Eight genotypes comprising the plantain "Gonja" (Musa AAB group), the dessert banana "Sukali Ndizi" (AAB), the beer banana "Kayinja" (ABB), and five East African Highland bananas (AAA-EA) were assessed at flower emergence of the plant crop. Root damage and plant growth characteristics were assessed on both infected and noninfected plants. This study showed that Radopholus similis and Helicotylenchus multicinctus were recovered in highest numbers from infected mother plants. Significantly (P < 0.05) higher shoot and root damage was observed in the infested plot compared to the noninfested plot. The differences in nematode damage observed among the different Musa genotypes confirm the variability in susceptibility to nematodes. Most of the East African Highland bananas and "Gonja" had a significant reduction in root system size. In addition, toppling and lengthening of the period to flower emergence of the plant crop was much more pronounced in these genotypes. In contrast to previous reports, this study indicated that a multispecies nematode infection significantly (P < 0.05) reduced shoot and root growth of "Kayinja". "Sukali Ndizi", however, was observed to be tolerant to nematode infection as a small reduction in the root system size was associated with a negligible effect on the corm and shoot growth characteristics. Therefore, the percentage reduction in root and shoot growth due to nematode infection is not constant but depends on the plant genotype.