Biocontrol potentials of Trichoderma species in the control of Fusarium wilt in five tomatoes (Lycopersicon esculentum L.) varieties cultivated under greenhouse conditions in Southwest Nigeria

Favour D. Olaoluwa(1), Olumide E. Omotayo(2), Akinlolu O. Akanmu(3),


(1) College of Agriculture, Engineering and Science, Iwo, Osun State, Nigeria.
(2) College of Agriculture, Engineering and Science, Iwo, Osun State, Nigeria.
(3) North-West University, Mmabatho, South Africa.
Corresponding Author

Abstract


Important pathogenic fungi such as Fusarium species are mostly associated with the wilting of tomato plant leaves and constitute a serious limiting factor for tomato production. Therefore, this study aimed to screen tomato varieties commonly cultivated in Nigeria to determine their host resistance status to Fusarium oxysporum. The treatments included Trichoderma asperellum, T. harzianum, and Mancozeb fungicide. Data recorded included the incidence and severity of the pathogen, plant height, leaf number, and fruit yield of the tomato plants. Tomato plants grown with Trichoderma sp. exhibited better performance in terms of average fruit yield count of 6.5 for T. asperellum and 6.7 for T. harzianum compared to the average yield of 1.7 fruit count for Mancozeb fungicide. The lowest disease incidence was recorded in the variety 3 (NGB00737) with a 5.81% incidence in the Mancozeb-treated plants. Conversely, T. asperellum-treated plants in variety 3 (NGB00737) had the highest disease incidence of 46.49%. For variety 4 (NGB00695), plants treated with Mancozeb had the least disease with a severity rating of 1. Similarly, variety 5 (NGB00725) plants treated with T. asperellum showed the least disease severity rating of 1. All other treated plants showed higher severity values of 4.

The Trichoderma species also improved the fruit yield and some agronomic parameters of the tomato plants compared to the chemical control. Agro-business enthusiasts, commercial growers and local farmers are therefore encouraged to further exploit the potential of Trichoderma species as means of control for fungus-based diseases in tomato plants such as those caused by Fusarium.


Keywords


Tomato, Fusarium, Trichoderma, biocontrol agents

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