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Nematicidal Activity of Essential Oils and Their Components Against the Root-Knot Nematode

July 2000 , Volume 90 , Number  7
Pages  710 - 715

Yuji Oka , Sengul Nacar , Eli Putievsky , Uzi Ravid , Zohara Yaniv , and Yitzhak Spiegel

First and sixth authors: Department of Nematology, Agricultural Research Organization (ARO), The Volcani Center, Bet Dagan 50250, Israel; second author: Biology Department, Faculty of Science, Kahramanmaras Sutcu Imam University, K. Maras, Turkey; third and fourth authors: Department of Aromatic, Medicinal, and Spice Crops, ARO, Newe Ya'ar Research Center, Ramat Yishay 30095, Israel; and fifth author: Department of Natural Resources, ARO, The Volcani Center, Bet Dagan 50250, Israel

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Accepted for publication 24 March 2000.

Nematicidal activity of essential oils extracted from 27 spices and aromatic plants were evaluated in vitro and in pot experiments. Twelve of the twenty-seven essential oils immobilized more than 80% of juveniles of the root-knot nematode Meloidogyne javanica at a concentration of 1,000 μl/liter. At this concentration, most of these oils also inhibited nematode hatching. Essential oils of Carum carvi, Foeniculum vulgare, Mentha rotundifolia, and Mentha spicata showed the highest nematicidal activity among the in vitro tested oils. These oils and those from Origanum vulgare, O. syriacum, and Coridothymus capitatus mixed in sandy soil at concentrations of 100 and 200 mg/kg reduced the root galling of cucumber seedlings in pot experiments. The main components of these essential oils were tested for their nematicidal activity. Carvacrol, t-anethole, thymol, and (+)-carvone immobilized the juveniles and inhibited hatching at >125 μl/liter in vitro. Most of these components mixed in sandy soil at concentrations of 75 and 150 mg/kg reduced root galling of cucumber seedlings. In 3-liter pot experiments, nematicidal activity of the essential oils and their components was confirmed at 200 and 150 mg/kg, respectively. The results suggest that the essential oils and their main components may serve as nematicides.

© 2000 The American Phytopathological Society