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24 Mar 2019, Edition - 1349, Sunday

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TNAU urges buyers to get checked nursery materials by Nematology department

Covai Post Network

COIMBATORE: The Tamil Nadu Agricultural University has appealed to the buyers of nursery material to be careful while purchasing the material and check the roots of the saplings, especially fruit crops before taking it home.

It suggested to the buyers to get their materials randomly checked by the Nematology department. In a press release on Thursday, professors of Nematology Department K. Poornima and S. Subramanian said nematodes were microscopic worms that are present in the soil and enter the plant roots and cause destruction by way of sucking cell sap or by disrupting the conducting vessels.

“Nematodes pave way into young seedlings in nurseries through infested nursery soil and materials used for filling polybags like unsterilised coir pit, coco peat and other potting media,” they said.

“These infested seedlings exhibit small to minute galls in their tiny roots, each gall representing a female nematode which would have gained entry into the root as a young juvenile and has established itself within. Nematode infested fruit include guava, citrus etc. where leaves get discolored at nursery stage, followed by defoliation and stagnant stunted growth. These nematode infested plants start to wither soon after plantation and mostly die within a year causing huge loss to farmers,” the professors added.

The buyers of nursery materials especially fruit crops such as guava, pomegranate, citrus and mango are suggested to get materials checked by the Department of Nematology at the Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, they said.

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