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Crop yields from lucerne medicago sativa cultivars displaying gradations in resistance to wilt verticillium albo atrum



Crop yields from lucerne medicago sativa cultivars displaying gradations in resistance to wilt verticillium albo atrum



Journal of Agricultural Science 112(3): 387-394



Yields from lucerne cultivars grown on land infested with Verticillium albo-atrum, a cause of wilt disease, were studied over the period 1969-77. Field experiments established in 1969, 1971, 1972 and 1973 were maintained for periods of 4-6 years. Reactions by cvs Europe and Vertus were of principal interest. Europe is considered to be moderately susceptible, initially producing yields exceeding those of resistant types on uninfested land. In comparison cv. Vertus has considerable resistance derived from a polygenic system. In the first 2 cropping years on infested land, Europe yielded similarly to Vertus with only slight symptom expression. In year 3, Europe maintained comparable yields to Vertus but with increasing disease expression. During succeeding years Europe was badly affected by disease and yields were below those achieved by Vertus. Data from other cultivars indicated a positive correlation between symptoms in years 4 and 5, a negative correlation between dry-matter yield in year 5 and symptom severity in year 4, and a negative correlation between symptom severity and yield in year 5. Symptom expression and pathogen build-up appear to occur at similar rates in the latter years of a lucerne crop. Disease development in one season has a considerable effect on future productivity. These findings are discussed in terms of the primary (extra-vascular) and secondary (intra-vascular) determinants of resistance to wilt pathogens. It is suggested that the apparent moderate suceptibility of cv. Europe in seasons two and three relates to a rapid growth rate.

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Accession: 007167695

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DOI: 10.1017/s002185960008583x


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