Biocontrol of damping-off and root-rot causing pathogens by novel Rhizobacteria isolated in Saskatchewan
In Saskatchewan, land area used to grow pulse crops is increasing, and maintenance of plant health is imperative to produce an economically viable resource. The objective of this study is to characterize novel rhizobacteria for plant growth promoting properties: enhancing the root and shoot growth of pea and lentil, and suppressing the growth and disease severity caused by fungal pathogens. From in vitro assays, isolates 5-6, 4-31, and 2-9 suppressed the growth of fungal pathogens. Mechanisms which suppress the growth of fungal pathogens may include the production of enzymes which degrade the cell wall of the fungi, and antifungal metabolites. In studies where rhizobacteria were inoculated in combination with commercial Rhizobium inoculants onto pea and lentil seeds, isolate 2-9 significantly increased the root dry weight of pea, and isolate 4-31 and 5-6 increased the ability of Rhizobium to fix nitrogen in pea and lentil, respectively. Fungicide compatibility studies using two commonly-used products (Apron®-FL, Crown®) showed that isolate 5-6 was compatible with both fungicides, whereas isolates 4-31 and 2-9 were compatible only with Apron®-FL. The three bacterial isolates (5-6, 4-31, and 2-9) chosen for possible development of a commercial inoculant show promise to be effective biological control agents against fungal pathogens.
Rhizobium, plant growth promotion, fungal pathogens, biological control, inoculant, pulse crops (pea, lentil)
Soils and Crops Workshop