SURVIVAL OF CLAVICEPS FUSIFORMIS SCLEROTIA IN ANTAGONIST-AMENDED FIELD SOILS. MAHADEV AMURTHY, H.S. PRAKASH AND H.S. SHETTY
The sclerotia of Claviceps fusifornzis, the casual agent of ergot of pearl millet (Pennisetunz glazicum), were placed in soil amended with antagonists - Aspergillus niger, Epicoccurn andropogonis, Fusarium chlamydosporunz, F. lzeterosporunz, Triclzoderma harzianum, T. uiride and Bacillus subtilis. The sclerotia placed in antagonist-amended soil lost their viability faster than those placed in unamended soil. The loss in viability was faster at a depth of 15 cm than at 2 cm. Bacillus subtilis, F. chlanzydosporum and F. lzeterosporum were found most effective in reducing the viability of sclerotia. The sclerotia unamended soil survived up to 12 months, whereas in amended soil up to only four months. The selected antagonists also significantly enhanced the percentage seed germination and seedling vigour of pearl millet.
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