Bulgarian Journal of Agricultural Science
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Effect of silicon foliar fertilization on limiting the growth of stem and root necrosis in pepper (Capsicum annum L.)
Nataliya Karadzhovaorcid
Abstract: Botrytis cinerea and Sclerotinia sclerotiorum are important fungal pathogens of a wide range of hosts. Infection prevention and control can be extremely difficult. There are no effective fungicides to control these soil-borne pathogens, causing gray and white mold on pepper. The results of a study of the influence of liquid fertilizer “Optysil” (Intermag, Poland) are presented: containing silicon: (SiO2 – 200 g/L) and iron (Fe 16.5 g/L) on the pepper resistance to attack by Botrytis cinerea and Sclerotinia sclerotiorum. The experiment was carried out in 2022, in field conditions at the Maritsa VCRI with the Stryama variety, planted according to a scheme (60/25 cm) on the area naturally infected with Pyrenochaeta lycopersici.
The fertilizer “Optysil” was applied by spraying as an aqueous solution at a concentration of 0.05 ml per L of water three times: one week after transplanting, twice during mass flowering stage with an interval of 14 days. Plants were artificially infected with pure cultures of the pathogens Botrytis cinerea and Sclerotinia sclerotiorum by the method of decapitation of the main stem, applying a 7-day pure culture of each isolate and wrapping the wounded area with aluminum foil. An increase in the necrotic areas was observed in the variants treated with “Optysil” and the control variants without treating the plants with this preparation. Infection of the young plants was carried out in the beginning of flowering stage.
The degree of infection of the roots with corky root rot is recorded after removing the plants from the soil according to a generally accepted 5-point scale for reporting. Temperature during the trial period: daytime 27-32oC; night – 13–17oC. The length of necrotic lesions in decapitated plants was measured in mm up to and including the 10th day after transplanting. A tendency to strengthen the immune response of pepper plants treated with "Optysil" to infection with the studied fungal pathogens was established. The effect of “Optysil” application against the growth of necrosis from gray mold is 43%, against white mold - 41%, corky root rot – above 50%. The results show that the silicon acts as an immunostimulant, blocking the rapid growth of stem necrosis caused by wound infection with Botrytis cinerea and Sclerotinia sclerotiorum and inhibiting the process of infection of pepper roots with the pathogen Pyrenochaeta lycopersici.
Keywords: Botrytis cinerea; Capsicum annuum L.; fungus; immune response; infection; Sclerotinia sclerotiorum
Citation: Karadzhova, N. (2024). Effect of silicon foliar fertilization on limiting the growth of stem and root necrosis in pepper (Capsicum annum L.). Bulg. J. Agric. Sci., 30(3), 418–422
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Date published: 2024-06-25
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