EVALUATION OF THE EFFICACY OF AQUEOUS STEM AND LEAF EXTRACTS OF NEEM (AZADIRACHTA INDIA A. JUSSIEU). IN REDUCING MOULD GROWTH AND ENHANCING THE PERFORMANCE OF GROUNDNUTE.C. WOKOMA AND N. FRANK-PETERSIDE
The efficacy of beniate and aqueous leaf and stem extracts of A7adirachta indica A. Jussieu was evaluated on naturally infested groundnut seeds purchased from Port Harcourt, using the blotter method. The in vitro germination and infection level of untreated seeds were 92.5 Vc, and 73.25 %, respectively. The distributions of the six species of fungi on the seeds were: Rhizopus stolonifer 51 %, Aspergillus niger 37 %, A. flavus 48 %, Fusarium moniliforme 45 %, Penicillium digitatum 18 % and P. italicum 27 %. Benlate at rates of 3 pg/m1 and 5 hg/m1 completely inhibited R. stolonifer, A. flavus, A. niger and F. moniliforme. Aqueous stem extract of A. indica gave better control of all the seed-borne fungi than leaf extract. Benlate and A. indica extracts reduced germination by 19 to 22 % and 3 to 19 %, respectively. Although benlate completely inhibited most of the seed- borne fungi, it had adverse effect on seedling emergence, height and weight. Aqueous leaf extracts were more effective than the stem extracts in enhancing emergence and height of seedlings in potted trials. Aqueous extracts of A. indica were more effective than benlate and were not phytotoxic, therefore, they would be safer to use.
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