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Incidence and Impact of Verticillium dahliae in Soil Associated with Certified Potato Seed Lots

January 2013 , Volume 103 , Number  1
Pages  55 - 63

Jeremiah K. S. Dung, Philip B. Hamm, Jordan E. Eggers, and Dennis A. Johnson

First and fourth authors: Department of Plant Pathology, Washington State University, Pullman; and second and third authors: Department of Botany & Plant Pathology, Hermiston Agricultural Research and Extension Center, Oregon State University, Hermiston.

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Accepted for publication 30 August 2012.

Verticillium dahliae causes Verticillium wilt of potato and can be found in soil associated with potato seed tubers. The purpose of this research was to quantify V. dahliae in soil associated with certified seed tubers and determine if this potential inoculum source is related to disease development in the field. Approximately 68% of seed lots assayed contained V. dahliae-infested soil on seed tuber surfaces (seed tuber soil). Over 82% of seed lots contained V. dahliae in loose seed lot soil obtained from bags and trucks used to transport seed tubers. Most samples contained ≤50 CFU/g but some contained >500 CFU/g. Most isolates (93%) were vegetative compatibility group 4A. Populations of V. dahliae in stem sap increased with increasing inoculum densities in field soils only when V. dahliae concentrations in seed tuber soil were low. High concentrations of V. dahliae in seed tuber soil resulted in greater stem sap colonization when V. dahliae inoculum densities in field soil were low (P < 0.01) and resulted in greater pathogen inoculum densities in postharvest field soils (P = 0.04). Seed tubers contaminated with V. dahliae-infested soils may introduce the pathogen into fields not previously cropped to potato or recontaminate those which have received preplant management practices. Long-term management of V. dahliae requires reducing propagules in soil associated with seed lots.

© 2013 The American Phytopathological Society