Plant Disease (2017) 101, 1222-1229

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E.A. Newberry, L. Ritchie, B. Babu, T. Sanchez, K.A. Beckham, J.B. Jones, J.H. Freeman, N.S. Dufault and M.L. Paret (2017)
Epidemiology and management of bacterial leaf spot on watermelon caused by Pseudomonas syringae
Plant Disease 101 (7), 1222-1229
Abstract: Bacterial leaf spot of watermelon caused by Pseudomonas syringae has been an emerging disease in the southeastern United States in recent years. Disease outbreaks in Florida were widespread from 2013 to 2014 and resulted in foliar blighting at the early stages of the crop and transplant losses. We conducted a series of field trials at two locations over the course of two years to examine the chemical control options that may be effective in management of this disease, and to investigate the environmental conditions conducive for bacterial leaf spot development. Weekly applications of acibenzolar-S-methyl (ASM) foliar, ASM drip, or copper hydroxide mixed with ethylene bis-dithiocarbamate were effective in reducing the standardized area under the disease progress curve (P < 0.05). Pearson's correlation test demonstrated a negative relationship between the average weekly temperature and disease severity (–0.77, P = 0.0002). When incorporated into a multiple regression model with the square root transformed average weekly rainfall, these two variables accounted for 71% of the variability observed in the weekly disease severity (P < 0.0001). This information should be considered when choosing the planting date for watermelon seedlings as the cool conditions often encountered early in the spring season are conducive for bacterial leaf spot development.
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Research topic(s) for pests/diseases/weeds:
control - general
population dynamics/ epidemiology

Pest and/or beneficial records:

Beneficial Pest/Disease/Weed Crop/Product Country Quarant.
Pseudomonas syringae Watermelon/colocynth (Citrullus) U.S.A. (SE)