ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Effect of climatic conditions on infection pressure of Phytophthora infestans and harmfulness of the pathogen to potato crops
 
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Plant Breeding and Acclimatization Institute, Radzikow Department of Potato Protection and Seed Science, Bonin 76-009 Bonin 3, Poland
CORRESPONDING AUTHOR
Józefa Kapsa
Plant Breeding and Acclimatization Institute, Radzikow Department of Potato Protection and Seed Science, Bonin 76-009 Bonin 3, Poland
 
Journal of Plant Protection Research 2007;47(4):357–366
 
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ABSTRACT
In the recent years earlier appearance of late blight on potato crops and the increase of infection pressure of Phytophthora infestans has been observed due to the changes in its population. The occurrence of P. infestans on potato plants at early plant growth stages points to the possibility of existence of other infection sources such as infected seed tubers or volunteer plants and their increasing role in the disease epidemiology. These changes have led to late blight epidemics developing earlier and more severely than previously and changes in the occurrence and development of first symptoms of P. infestans infection on potato plants. In the years 1997–2006, field studies were conducted at the Plant Breeding and Acclimatization Institute of Bonin with the emphasis on comparison of time of the occurrence and incidence level of late blight of potato. The criteria for pathogen infection pressure assessment were assumed to be the percentage of haulm destruction at the end of growing season and area under the disease progress curve (AUDPC), the late blight development rate defining the increase of destruction of above ground plant parts in unit time and also tuber yield and its healthiness. The observations carried out at Bonin revealed that both time of occurrence and severity of late blight differed and were dependent upon meteorological conditions and upon the year. Late blight occurred the earliest at Bonin in 2001 (42 days after planting). The time of occurrence of late blight depends upon rainfall in May and June. A very high infection rate of the pathogen was observed, particularly in 2006 (0.517) and in 2004 (0.400) despite late time of late blight appearance in the season. In these years AUDPC on the unprotected cultivar was 0.071 and 0.508, respectively.The 10 years of observations conducted at Bonin revealed that the yield and occurrence of tuber late blight depended mostly upon meteorological conditions in particular years.
CONFLICT OF INTEREST
The authors have declared that no conflict of interests exist.
 
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