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Nathan Shoaf, Lori Hoagland, and Daniel S. Egel

( Atucha and Litus, 2015 ). However, the mechanisms facilitating biochar-mediated disease suppression are not well understood, and suppressive effects could depend on the pathosystem and type of biochar applied ( Graber et al., 2015 ). Biochar is made from

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Michael Raviv

Compost is organic matter that has undergone partial thermophilic, aerobic decomposition. This environmentally safe process is called composting. The combination of raw materials and the chosen composting method yields a wide range of characteristics, such as organic matter (OM) content, nutrient content, potential for disease suppressiveness and other physical, chemical, and biological properties. The objectives of this review are describing the horticultural outlets for composts, defining compost characteristics important for the above uses, and describing composting procedures and raw materials leading to these characteristics. The two main horticultural uses of composts are as soil amendment and as an ingredient in container media. Soil-applied composts improve soil fertility mainly by increasing soil organic matter (SOM) that activates soil biota. Compost's nutrient content, and especially that of nitrogen (N), should be high (>1.8%). Composts having these characteristics are produced of raw materials rich in both OM and N, while minimizing their loss during composting. Typical raw materials for this purpose include animal manures, offal, abattoir residues, sewage sludge, and grass clippings. Various composting methods can yield the required results, including turned windrows, aerated static piles, and in-vessel composting. Composts are also used for substrates as low-cost peat substitute, potentially suppressive against various soilborne diseases. These composts must be stable and non-phytotoxic. Physical properties of compost used as substrate are important. Hydraulic conductivity, air porosity, and available water should be high. Reconciling the physical and biological demands may be difficult. Materials such as softwood bark, wood shavings, various types of shells or hulls, and coconut coir are characterized by good physical properties after composting. However, being relatively resistant to decomposition, these materials should be subjected to long and well-controlled composting, which may be shortened using N and N-rich organic matter such as animal manures. High temperatures [>65 °C (149.0 °F)] may cause ashing, which leads to reduced porosity. In addition to ligneous materials, composts serving as growing media may be produced from numerous organic wastes, such as manures, food industry wastes, etc. These materials are better composted in aerated static piles, which tend to minimize physical breakdown. Animal excreta are of special value for co-composting as they contain large, diverse populations of microorganisms, which accelerate the process.

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Cécile Bertin, Andy F. Senesac, Frank S. Rossi, Antonio DiTommaso, and Leslie A. Weston

allelopathic properties can all influence weed suppressive ability ( Eom et al., 2005 ). Previous field experiments have shown that fescue species can be strongly weed suppressive when used for erosion control in agronomic, orchard, and vineyard settings

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Gang Lu, Wenlei Jian, Jiajing Zhang, Yijing Zhou, and Jiashu Cao

suppressive effects of soluble Si against fungal disease in asparagus. Future studies should examine the mechanism behind this suppressive effect of soluble Si to develop an integrated method to control stem blight in asparagus. Literature Cited

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Naveen Hyder, James J. Sims, and Stephen N. Wegulo

resource ( Masago et al., 1977 ; Meerow, 1994 ; Prasad, 1997 ). It has been demonstrated that coir can suppress certain soilborne plant pathogens ( Candole and Evans, 2004 ; van der Gaag and Wever, 2005 ). Combining the disease-suppressive properties of

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Bhimanagouda S. Patil, G.K. Jayaprakasha, and Amit Vikram

potential health-maintaining properties. In general, consumption of FAV may account for the lower incidence of various chronic diseases. Several of the indigenous vegetables, including bitter melon, fenugreek, and Moringa oleifera Lam., are currently being

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H.M. Mathers, S.B. Lowe, C. Scagel, D.K. Struve, and L.T. Case

production for its reported growth enhancement, disease suppression, and general stress reduction properties (H. Hoitink, personal communication). In a study comparing substrates with 0%, 10%, and 20% Comtil in 1-gal containers, increasing the amount of

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Nicolas Gruyer, Martine Dorais, Gérald J. Zagury, and Beatrix W. Alsanius

, 2008 ). Furthermore, compost gives the filter media some interesting properties, including disease suppression ( Raviv, 2011 ). However, the accumulation of organic compounds, such as high concentrations of phenolic compounds, in nutrient solutions can

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Kaori Itagaki, Toshio Shibuya, Motoaki Tojo, Ryosuke Endo, and Yoshiaki Kitaya

Host-plant resistance to foliar diseases can be increased by artificial lights with particular wavelengths ( Chen et al., 2015 ; Schuerger and Brown, 1997 ; Wang et al., 2010 ). The authors reported that the development of visible colonies of

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Maria L. Burgos-Garay, Chuanxue Hong, and Gary W. Moorman

(Oxalobacteraceae) PLoS One 7 Pane, C. Piccolo, A. Spaccini, R. Celano, G. Villecco, D. Zaccardelli, M. 2013 Agricultural waste-based composts exhibiting suppressivity to diseases caused by the phytopathogenic soil-borne fungi Rhizoctonia solani and Sclerotinia