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Evaluation of Pepper Cultivars for Tolerance to Phytophthora capsici and Impact of Messenger on Tolerance and Yield 2001

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Project Leader(s): Anu Rangarajan, Dept. of Horticulture, Cornell

Margaret Tuttle McGrath, Dept. of Plant Pathology, Cornell

Cooperator(s): Ted Blomgren, Cornell Cooperative Extension, Capital District

Alan Erb, CCE, Lake Plains Vegetable Program

Dale Moyer, CCE, Suffolk County

Type of grant: Demonstration and Implementation: Pest Resistant Crops

Project location(s): Tompkins, Schoharie, Niagara, Suffolk Counties

Abstract: The goal of this project was to demonstrate and evaluate commercially available pepper cultivars for tolerance to Phytophthora capsici crown and fruit rot. Some of the cultivars were treated with a compound designed to enhance the ability of plants to resist diseases, to see if disease tolerance or yield could be improved. Of the tested cultivars, Paladin and Aristotle showed good tolerance to this disease, but disease pressure this year was light. Yields and earliness were generally similar across the 4 locations of testing, indicating that these varieties were fairly stable in their performance and may be good candidates for use in fields where the disease is problematic. Using Messenger, one crop stimulant, did not enhance yield or disease resistance of these peppers. The added labor and expense for application of this material could not be justifed through these experiments.