International network for natural sciences – research journal
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Effectiveness of organic substances in the control of powdery mildew (Sphaerotheca fuligenia) of butternut (Cucurbita moschata PEPO)

By: Munyaradzi Shamuyarira, Lovejoy Tembo, Sommerset Mhungu

Key Words: Powdery mildew, Sodium bicarbonate, Cattle milk, Dilute acetic acid, Garlic.

Int. J. Agr. Agri. Res. 9(1), 92-99, July 2016.


Powdery mildew (Sphaerotheca fuligenia) is an economically important disease of cucurbits requiring sustainable means of management. A field experiment was set up to evaluate the effectiveness of cattle milk, sodium bicarbonate, dilute acetic acid and garlic in controlling powdery mildew in butternut (Cucurbita moschata pepo). The trial was laid out as a randomized complete block design with 3 replicates and 6 treatments. The treatments were applied at the following concentrations; 1. Cattle milk at 100ml/liter of water, 2. Dilute acetic acid at 6ml/litre of water, 3. Bicarbonate of soda at 10g/litre of water, 4. Garlic at 20g/litre of water, 5. Tubuconazole in the form of folicur at 0.5ml per liter of water and 6. Control which was not sprayed. A significant difference (P<0.01) was recorded at 60days after planting with respect to disease incidence and milk had the lowest incidence of 12.9% and the highest incidence of 37.3% was recorded in the control treatment. Milk and sodium bicarbonate managed to suppress both disease incidence and severity. This study confirms the fungicidal properties of milk and sodium bicarbonate, garlic, and dilute acetic, suggesting their use as fungicides for disease control for sustainable powdery mildew management.


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