Common crops that can serve as reservoirs of infection include tomatoes, soybeans, peanuts, and clover. How to Prevent Southern Blight. Sclerotia are spread by the movement of infested soil and plant material. Perhaps for this reason, I have observed this disease in my own tomato plots. In 1928, the United States Department of Agriculture reported that S. rolfsii and root knot nematode caused more damage in southern USA than any other Pathogen [1] (Hagan,1999). commitment to diversity. Fumigation may provide only partial control; no resistant varieties are available. Burn infected plant parts or place them in plastic bags. Always sanitize tools with a mixture of four parts bleach to one part water before moving to an uninfected area. A. rolfsii can survive and overwinter as sclerotia and on host debris in the soil for years. of soil for several years. Southern blight, caused by the soilborne basidiomycete fungus Athelia rolfsii (formerly Sclerotium rolfsii) is a persistent disease affecting tomato throughout the southern United States and other countries.Post-transplant applications of succinate-dehydrogenase inhibitor (SDHI) or quinone-outside inhibitor (QoI) fungicides may be effective alternatives to broad-spectrum fumigation to … However, the fungus is generally restricted to the upper 2 to 3 inches of soil and will not survive at deeper depths. Unlike early blight, late blight on tomatoes develops later in the summer, and always following a period of prolonged rain. Losses can vary considerably depending on the environ-mental conditions, crop type and soil conditions. Vines are not tall, perhaps 5 feet. Tomato cultivation is highly susceptible for soil born diseases and among them southern blight disease caused by Scelerotium rolfsii is very common. However, 2016 has been relatively hot and dry in southwest Indiana. Usually, such conditions are more common in August than early July. Be sure to obtain current information about usage regulations and examine a current product label before applying any chemical. The fruit will collapse within 3 to 4 days and white mycelium and sclerotia can fill the lesion cavity. N.C. On older plants, symptoms first appear as a dark brown lesion on the stem near the soil surface. The fungus attacks a wide range of plants and survives for long periods in soil as sclerotia. You may need to work the soil several times. Tomato Diseases Southern Blight Sclerotium rolfsii Found in warm climates worldwide World Vegetable Center Symptoms Young infected plants wilt suddenly and permanently. Southern blight of tomato caused by the soil-borne fungus Sclerotium rolfsii. Find more information at the following NC State Extension websites: Publication date: Jan. 17, 2019 SOUTHERN BLIGHT OF TOMATO Southern blight, caused by the fungus Sclerotium rolfsii, occurs worldwide but is most important in tropical and subtropical areas. High temperatures (above 85°F, 29°C) favor the disease, which occasionally causes damage to tomato crops grown in the Central Valley. A&T State University. This fungus infects emerging seedlings below or at the soil level and causes damping-off. The southern blight fungus Sclerotium rolfsii, is hard to miss in healthy, green tomato plants. Among the vegetable crops affected are tomato, pepper, eggplant, snap bean, Jerusalem artichoke, and occasionally cantaloupe, watermelon, and pumpkin fruit. Organic growers and home owners should follow the general disease management recommendations. Sclerotium rolfsii is a destructive soil borne plant pathogen which causes Southern blight disease on a wide variety of plants. Individuals who use agricultural chemicals are responsible for ensuring that the intended use complies with current regulations and conforms to the product label. Initially, southern blight of tomatoes shows up by rapidly yellowing, wilting leaves. You may also want to prune lower leaves that may come in contact with the soil. The fungus can easily infect fruit that are in contact with infested soil. He originally was approached by some large tomato growers in South Carolina who were having problems with Southern blight. Receive Email Notifications for New Publications. Under moist conditions, white mycelium will typically develop on stem lesions and can sometimes extend several centimeters up the stem of tomato and pepper plants. Among them southern blight is a destructive soil borne plant pathogen which causes southern blight Sclerotium rolfsii in reSidential... Stem, usually covered in a white fungus at the base cases the first sign of disease or at five. 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