Effect of Red Light Treatment of Seedlings of Pepper, Pumpkin, and Tomato on the Occurrence of Phytophthora Damping-off

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  • 1 Department of Crop Sciences, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL 61801
  • | 2 Faculty of Life and Environmental Science, Shimane University, Matsue, Japan

A study was conducted in the greenhouse to investigate the effects of red light (600-700 nm) on the subsequent occurrence of seedling infection of bell pepper, pumpkin, and tomato caused by Phytophthora capsici. Three- or 4-week-old seedlings were inoculated with zoospores or transplanted into pots filled with artificially infested soil mix. Red light treatment of seedlings reduced Phytophthora damping-off by up to 79%. Only 21% to 36% of red light-treated seedlings became infected, whereas 78% to 100% of the control seedlings, grown either in natural daylight (NDL) or under white light (WL), became infected and died. The height, and fresh and dry weight of seedlings treated with red light were significantly higher than those grown under NDL or WL.

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