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Zeinah A. El-Hamalawi and John A. Menge

At monthly intervals, plants and stem cuttings of avocado (Persea americana Miller) `Hass' grafted on `Barr Duke' rootstock and `Topa Topa' growing in a lathhouse were wounded and inoculated with the stem canker pathogen, Phytophthora citricola Sawada. The seasonal changes (measured monthly) in the extent of colonization of the avocado plants by P. citricola followed a periodic pattern, with two peaks of colonization during an annual growth cycle. Concentration of free amino acids and total soluble carbohydrates in the plant tissues followed a periodic pattern with two peaks similar to that of canker growth. Months were significantly different for canker size, free amino acids, and total soluble carbohydrates of the bark tissues. The extent of colonization was highest during May-June, after the first vegetative flush, and during November-December, after the second vegetative flush. Total free amino acids of the hark tissue was highly correlated with canker size (r = 0.89). Although the total soluble carbohydrate of the bark tissue was also elevated during the periods of canker development, it showed lower positive correlation (r = 0.45) with canker size. Plants were relatively resistant to colonization through March-April, during the first vegetative flush, and through August-September, during the second vegetative flush. Cankers formed on stem cuttings were generally larger than those of intact plants.

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Zeinab A. El-Hamalawi and John A. Menge

The sugary exudate appearing on bark lesions of Persea americana Miller and Persea indica plants after infection with Phytophthora citricola contained viable oospores and hyphal fragments in the field and in the greenhouse. This sugary exudate was a source of inoculum and dispersal of the pathogen within and between avocado plants. Spraying water onto lesions moved inoculum from the sugary exudate to wounds below. Water from sprinkler irrigation washed propagules into the soil around the plants. Viable propagules of Phytophthora citricola were identified in the feces of snails (Helix aspersa) that had fed on infected bark tissues. When these snails were moved to healthy plants, they made wounds on succulent tissue, and the infectious feces induced cankers. Ants (Iridomyrmex humilis) were attracted to the sugary exudate and also transmitted infectious propagules to wounds on avocado stems and to the soil. Control strategy for the avocado stem canker disease should consider control of vectors.

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John A. Menge, Greg W. Douhan, Brandon McKee, Elinor Pond, Gary S. Bender and Ben Faber

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Etaferahu Takele, John A. Menge, John E. Pehrson Jr., Jewell L. Meyer, Charles W. Coggins Jr., Mary Lu Arpaia, J. Daniel Hare, Darwin R. Atkin and Carol Adams

The effect of various integrated crop management practices on productivity (fruit yield, grade, and sire) and returns of `Washington Navel' oranges [Citrus sinensis (L.) Osbeck] was determined in the San Joaquin Valley of California. Seventy-two combinations of treatments comprised of three irrigation levels [80%, 100%, and 120% evapotranspiration demand (ETc)], three N fertilizer levels (low, medium, and high based on 2.3%, 2.5%, and 2.7% leaf N, respectively), gibberellic acid (±), miticide (±), and fungicide-nematicide (±) were included in the analysis. Using a partial budgeting procedure, returns after costs were calculated for each treatment combiition. Costs of treatments, harvesting, packing, and processing were subtracted from the value of the crop. The value of the crop was calculated as the sum of returns of crop in each size and grade category. The overall result indicated that returns after costs were higher for the +fungicide-nematicide treatment and also were generally more with increased irrigation. The combination of 120% ETc, +fungicide-nematicide, medium or high N, -miticide, and -gibberellin showed the highest return of all treatment combinations. Second highest returns were obtained with high N or with miticide and gibberellin used together.