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Effect of Seed Treatment on Incidence and Severity of Garlic White Rot (Sclerotium cepivorum Berk) in the Highland Area of South Tigray, North Ethiopia

Harnet Abrha, Alem Gebretsadik, Girmay Tesfay and Girmay Gebresamuel

A participatory evaluation of integrated white rot management was conducted for two years during the 2013 and 2014 main cropping seasons (Julys-October) in Emba-Alaje and Enda-Mokoni Woredas of South Tigray. The sites selected for the trial were potential for garlic production and many farmers used this crop as main source of income. However, the productivity of the crop is declining from time to time due to white rot infestation. Hence, this study was conducted to evaluate hot water treatment and chemical application on controlling white rot infestation. During the first year, three treatments were used for the experiment: chemical treatment (Apron star 42 WS), hot water treatment at 46°C and farmers practice (control). During the second demonstration year additional treatment hot treatment plus chemical treatment included. The first year results indicated that lowest white rot incidence (25%) and number of cloves per hectare (2670) infected by white rot was recorded from hot water treated plots followed by chemical treatment (29% incidence) and (4240 infected cloves) per hectare. White rot incidence and number of plants per hectare infected by white rot was very high in the control plots as exhibited by 45% and 7910 plants, respectively. Significantly higher marketable yield (126.09 qt/ha) was obtained from hot water treated plots, while the lowest marketable yield (96.576 qt/ha) was obtained from the control or farmers practice plots. About 30.5% yield advantage was obtained from hot water treated plots compared to the control plot. The same result was also recorded during the second year demonstration. In Ayba and Atsela Kebeles the highest marketable yield and low white rot incidence and severity were recorded from hot water treated plots. Hot water treatment has also received higher acceptances and was ranked first by the farmer’s participated in the research for its low cost and higher response Unlike the two Kebeles, incidence of white rot in Simret Kebele was 100% in all treatments, however hot water treatment preferred by participant farmers by its accessibility. Therefore, from the result we can conclude that based on the accessibility, environmental benefits and farmer’s preferences hot water treatment is promising practice for white rot treatment in the intervention Kebeles.