Suppression of Phytophthora root and crown rot on pepper plants treated with Acibenzolar-S-Methyl

M. E. Matheron, M. Porchas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


The fungicide mefenoxam is registered for the control of Phytophthora blight of peppers caused by Phytophthora capsici. Isolates of the pathogen that are insensitive to mefenoxam, however, have been detected in some locations. Consequently, alternative methods are needed to control Phytophthora blight of peppers. Acibenzolar-S-methyl (ABM, Actigard) is a chemical activator of plant disease resistance that has potential for the management of Phytophthora blight of peppers. The effect of foliar applications of ABM on the development of root and crown rot on pepper plants grown in the greenhouse and inoculated with Phytophthora capsici or in soil naturally infested with the pathogen was evaluated. Inhibition of stem canker development on pepper cvs. Bell Tower and AZ9 after four treatments with ABM (75 μg/ml) was significantly greater than on plants receiving a single application of the chemical. Stem canker length on Bell Tower or AZ9 peppers was inhibited by 93.2 to 97.2% and 87.4 to 92.4% when plants were inoculated with P. capsici at 1 or 5 weeks, respectively, after the fourth application of ABM. Survival of chile pepper plants grown in field soil naturally infested with P. capsici was significantly increased by three foliar applications of ABM (75 μg/ml) compared with nontreated plants in all three trials when pots were watered daily and in two of three trials when pots were flooded for 48 h every 2 weeks. When soil was flooded every 2 weeks to establish conditions highly favorable for disease development, plants treated once with mefenoxam (100 μg/ml) survived significantly longer than those treated with ABM. On the other hand, when water was provided daily without periodic flooding to establish conditions less favorable for disease development, plant survival between the two chemicals was not different in two of three trials. Length of survival among chile pepper plants treated twice with 25, 50, or 75 μg/ml of ABM and grown in soil infested with P. capsici was not different. This work indicates that ABM could be an important management tool for Phytophthora root and crown rot on pepper plants.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)292-297
Number of pages6
JournalPlant disease
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Plant Science


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