A Disease Management Program Enhances Bean Production in the Dominican Republic

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  • 1 1Univ. of Nebraska, Lincoln, Neb.
  • 2 2CIAS, San Juan de la Maguana, Dominican Republic
  • 3 3Univ. of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez, Puerto Rico
  • 4 4Univ.of Wisconsin, Madison

Bean golden mosaic (BGM), rust (RU), web blight (WB), and common blight (CB) are major constraints affecting bean yields in the Dominican Republic (DR). The objectives of the USAID DR supported project were to educate graduate students, improve research facilities and equipment, institutionalize the project, and develop a comprehensive bean disease management program. The project trained 25 researchers. A national center for bean improvement (CIAS) was established. Facilities for plant pathology, germplasm storage, and screenhouses were built and equipment and vehicles were acquired. The high-yielding rust-resistant red mottled bean variety `PC-50' was introduced and grown on about 60% of the hectarage. However, BGM became a serious problem with the increase of the white fly population (vector of BGMV) due to increased vegetable production. Under severe BGM, yields were low in plantings made after 15 Dec. The combination of the use of `PC-50', along with a fallow period with delayed planting until early November, reduced the populations of white fly, BGM, RU, and CB and led to a dramatic yield increase of beans and to self sufficiency in beans in the DR. PC-50 became damaged by a new RU race and a resistant line PC-21-SMA (UPR) was released. New bean lines with resistance to BGM, WB, RU, and CBB are being tested for release.

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