general public through product volatilization and drift), and economic profitability ( Amvac Chemical Corp., 2004 ; Saeed et al., 2000 ). Mustard cultivar Idagold and oil seed radish cultivar Colonel have been suggested as biofumigant (plants that produce
Brad Geary, Corey Ransom, Brad Brown, Dennis Atkinson, and Saad Hafez
Guangyao Wang, Mathieu Ngouajio, and Darryl D. Warncke
The effects of cover crops on nutrient cycling, weed suppression, and onion (Allium cepa) yield were evaluated under a muck soil with high organic matter in Michigan. Four brassica cover crops, including brown mustard (Brassica juncea ‘Common brown’), oilseed radish (Raphanus sativus ‘Daikon’), oriental mustard (B. juncea ‘Forge’), and yellow mustard (Sinapis alba ‘Tilney’), as well as sorghum sudangrass (Sorghum bicolor × S. sudanense ‘Honey Sweet’) produced similar amount of biomass and recycled similar amounts of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. The brassica cover crop biomass contained more calcium, sulfur, and boron, but less magnesium, iron, manganese, copper, and zinc than sorghum sudangrass. However, soil fertility was generally similar regardless of whether a cover crop was used. This was mainly because the soil was sampled when most of the cover crop residue was not yet decomposed. Weed density during onion growth was reduced by all cover crops compared with the control with no cover crop, with yellow mustard treatment having the lowest weed density among the cover crops. Weed species composition was also significantly affected by the cover crops. Yellow mustard treatment had the lowest density of common purslane (Portulaca oleracea) and redroot pigweed (Amaranthus retroflexus), whereas sorghum sudangrass had the highest yellow nutsedge (Cyperus esculentus) density among all the treatments. However, weed suppression was not enough to eliminate normal control strategies. The brassica cover crops, especially oilseed radish and yellow mustard, increased onion stand count and marketable yield. These results suggest that brassica and sorghum sudangrass cover crops could provide multiple benefits if incorporated into short-term onion rotations under Michigan growing conditions.
Thierry E. Besançon, Maggie H. Wasacz, and Joseph R. Heckman
Cover crops included in a crop rotation can help increase nitrogen (N) availability to subsequent crops, raise soil organic matter, and suppress emergence and growth of various weed species. However, weed suppression by cover crops has mostly been investigated shortly after cover crop termination and not over a longer period spanning into the next cropping season. The effects of sunn hemp (Crotalaria juncea) and sorghum-sudangrass (Sorghum ×drummondi) planted the previous year on N availability before transplanting of late summer cabbage (Brassica oleracea), weed germination and growth, and cabbage yield was examined in field studies conducted in 2018 and 2019 at Pittstown, NJ. Results established that there was little evidence for a functional difference in soil N availability for fall cabbage production because of previous cover crop type. Heavy rainfall events both years may have caused major losses of available N that might otherwise be expected to come from N mineralization of residues of legume cover crop like sunn hemp. During the cover crop season, smooth pigweed (Amaranthus hybridus) and common lambsquarters (Chenopodium album) dry biomass was 77% and 82% lower, respectively, in sorghum-sudangrass compared with sunn hemp plots. The subsequent season following sorghum-sudangrass cover crop, dry biomass of broadleaf weeds was lower by 74% and 56% in June and July, respectively, compared with preceding sunn hemp. Smooth pigweed, common lambsquarters, and hairy galinsoga (Galinsoga quadriradiata) were the weed species most consistently affected by preceding sorghum-sudangrass cover crop with biomass decreased by up to 80%, 78%, and 64%, respectively. Thus, it appears that sorghum-sudangrass can provide suppression of some broadleaf species over a relatively long period and is indicative of sorghum-sudangrass allelopathic activity. On the contrary, density and biomass of grassy weeds as well as commercial yield of transplanted cabbage were unaffected by the preceding cover crop. These results suggest that sorghum-sudangrass cover crop could be integrated to transplanted cole crop rotation for providing weed suppression benefits without altering crop yield in New Jersey organic vegetable cropping systems.
Rachel E. Rudolph, Carl Sams, Robert Steiner, Stephen H. Thomas, Stephanie Walker, and Mark E. Uchanski
fumigants are needed. Biofumigants are a type of cover crop that, in addition to other soil benefits, have the ability to suppress soilborne pathogens including fungi or nematodes ( Kirkegaard et al., 1999 ). Biofumigation is a sustainable method of soil
D. Grant McCarty II, Sarah E. Eichler Inwood, Bonnie H. Ownley, Carl E. Sams, Annette L. Wszelaki, and David M. Butler
; 0.88 Mg C/ha, 125 kg N/ha, 56 kg P/ha, 51 kg K/ha). Each treatment was established in a plot 2.4 m × 9.1 m. Treatments included: 1) a fallow, unamended control (“untreated control”); 2) fallow with mustard seed meal added at treatment (“biofumigant
Robert K. Prange, Ali A. Ramin, Barbara J. Daniels-Lake, John M. DeLong, and P. Gordon Braun
Fewer postharvest technologies are available for use on organic than conventional fruits and vegetables. Even though biopesticides are perceived as likely candidates for postharvest use on organic produce, only some biopesticides will be approved as organic compounds for various reasons. An example is the definition of a biopesticide used by regulatory agencies such as the EPA which includes compounds that will not be considered organically acceptable. Fortunately, there are other existing or new technologies that could be acceptable on organic fruits and vegetables. Some examples are hot water immersion treatment or a hot water rinsing and brushing, new innovative controlled atmosphere techniques, alternative sprout control agents, naturally occurring volatiles and biofumigants. More research is needed on each of these technologies, both singly and in combination with each other.
P. R. Johnstone, T. K. Hartz, E. M. Miyao, and R. M. Davis
Mustard cover crop residue has been reported to have a “biofumigant” action when incorporated into the soil, potentially providing significant disease suppression and yield improvement for the succeeding crop. Such activity could be particularly useful in processing tomato rotations, where consecutive cropping invariably results in yield decline. Agronomic and environmental effects of growing over-winter mustard cover crops preceding tomato production were investigated in three field trials between 2002 and 2004. Two mustard cover crops [`Pacific Gold', a brown mustard (Brassica juncea), and `Caliente', a blend of brown and white mustard (Sinapis alba)] were compared to a legume cover crop mix, a fallow bed treatment (the standard grower practice in this region), and, in two of the three trials, a fumigation treatment using metam sodium. No suppression of soil populations of Verticillium dahliae or Fusarium spp. was observed with the mustard cover crops, nor was there any visual evidence of disease suppression on subsequent tomato crops. In these fields, the mustard either had no effect, or reduced tomato yield, when compared to the fallow treatment. At one of two sites, metam sodium fumigation significantly increased tomato yield. The presence of a cover crop, whether mustard or legume, reduced winter runoff by an average of 50% over two years of trials. No benefit of mustard cover cropping beyond this reduction in winter runoff was observed.
T.K. Hartz, P.R. Johnstone, E.M. Miyao, and R.M. Davis
Mustard (Brassica spp.) cover crop residue has been reported to have significant `biofumigant' action when incorporated into soil, potentially providing disease suppression and yield improvement for the succeeding crop. The effects of growing over-winter mustard cover crops preceding processing tomato (Lycopersicon escultentum Mill.) production were investigated in six field trials in the Sacramento Valley of California from 2002–04. A selection of mustard cover crops were compared to a legume cover crop mix, a fallow-bed treatment (the current grower practice in the region), and in two of the six trials, fumigation treatments using metam sodium. Mustard cover crops removed 115 to 350 kg·ha–1 N from the soil profile, reducing NO3-N leaching potential. Soil populations of Verticillium dahliae Kleb. and Fusarium spp. were unaffected by the cover crops, and there was no evidence of soilborne disease suppression on subsequent tomato crops. Mustard cover crops increased tomato yield in one field, and reduced yield in two fields. In one of two fields, metam sodium fumigation significantly increased tomato yield. We conclude that, while environmental benefits may be achieved, mustard cover cropping offers no immediate agronomic benefit for processing tomato production.
Julien Mercier, Paul Walgenbach, and Jorge I. Jiménez
The volatile-producing fungus Muscodoralbus is being developed as a biological fumigant for postharvest use, as it can kill storage pathogens and control fungal decay in various commodities. A wettable pad or sachet system made of teabag paper containing desiccated rye grain culture of M. albus was designed for the biofumigation of individual fruit containers. The fungus is reactivated before use by a brief immersion of the pad in water. This research was conducted to determine the potential of the pad system for controlling decay of table grapes in commercial cartons. Individual pads containing 24 or 86 g of grain culture (to achieve a 1:10 ratio of fumigant to box volume or a 1:100 ratio of fumigant to fruit weight, respectively) were added to Styrofoam cartons containing 8.6 kg of freshly harvested `Thompson Seedless' (TS) or `Ruby Seedless' (RS) grapes, which were then placed in cold storage at –1 to 0 °C. Control cartons exposed to SO2 were placed in a separate storage room and SO2 fumigation was performed once for TS and weekly for RS. After 8 to 9 weeks, the grapes were taken out of storage and rated for decay. In the experiment with TS, the 24-g and 86-g pads provided significant control of gray mold rot when compared to untreated cartons and were not statistically different from cartons exposed to a single SO2 fumigation. In the experiment with RS, only the 86-g pads provided significant decay control. Measurements of the three most abundant volatile compounds in empty cartons containing 10 g of the biofumigant revealed that partial coverage of holes mimicking obstruction by packed fruit achieved levels of isobutyl alcohol, 2-methyl-1-butanol, and isobutyric acid of 0.7, 1.6, and 11.2 ppb, respectively.
Onions with Biofumigants and Metam Sodium To grow quality onion bulbs, growers use fumigants and pesticides to control weed, pathogen, and nematode pests. Geary et al. (p. 569) evaluated biofumigant crops (mustard and oil-seed radish) as substitutes for