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Department of Plant Pathology and Microbiology
The Robert H. Smith Faculty of Agriculture, Food & Environment
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem

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Rehovot 76100 

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Cohen, O. ; Bar (Kutiel), P. ; Gamliel, A. ; Katan, J. ; Kurzbaum, E. ; Weber, G. ; Schubert, I. ; Riov, J. Rain-based soil solarization for reducing the persistent seed banks of invasive plants in natural ecosystems – Acacia saligna as a model. Pest Management Science 2019, 75, 1933-1941. Publisher's VersionAbstract
BACKGROUND: A large persistent seed bank of invasive plants is a significant obstacle to restoration programs. Soil solarization was demonstrated to be an effective method for reducing the seed bank of Australian acacias. However, use of this method in natural habitats might be limited due to the requirement to moisten the soil by irrigation. This study examined the possibility of replacing irrigation by trapping the soil moisture caused by the most recent rainfall, i.e. rain-based soil solarization (RBS). RESULTS: Exposure of Acacia saligna seeds to 57 °C at 20% soil moisture for 68 h resulted in almost complete loss of seed viability. Similarly, RBS treatment significantly reduced the viability of A. saligna seeds buried at a soil depth of 1–19 cm as well as seed density in the natural seed bank, and almost completely eliminated seedling emergence from natural seed banks of A. saligna and other environmental weeds. CONCLUSION: Our results indicate that RBS is an effective method for reducing the seed bank of invasive plants in natural habitats located in various climate regions characterized by different soil types. This is the first demonstration of a successful application of RBS for soil disinfestation. © 2018 Society of Chemical Industry. © 2018 Society of Chemical Industry
Kanaan, H. ; Hadar, Y. ; Medina, S. ; Krasnovsky, A. ; Mordechai-Lebiush, S. ; Tsror (Lahkim), L. ; Katan, J. ; Raviv, M. Effect of Compost Properties on Progress Rate of Verticillium dahliae Attack on Eggplant (Solanum melongena L.). Compost Science & Utilization 2018, 26, 71 - 78. Publisher's VersionAbstract
ABSTRACTSeveral composts were tested for their capacity to moderate the effect of Verticillium dahliae Kleb. (VCG B4, VD) on eggplant (Solanum melongena) under greenhouse conditions. Eggplants plantlets were inoculated by immersing their roots in conidial suspension and then planted in pots filled with mixtures of compost or peat moss, mixed with perlite. Six composts and peat moss mixtures were tested, of which tomato waste compost suppressed V. dahliae, and turkey litter compost partially suppressed it. Reduced levels of symptoms and lower fungal colonization were detected in the xylem of eggplants planted in tomato waste compost, and these plants accumulated more dry matter and had higher chlorophyll content compared to other media. However, survival of conidia in tomato waste compost showed only a moderate decrease compared with a sharp decrease in other media, suggesting that conidial eradication cannot be proposed as the suppressiveness mechanism. ? irradiation of tomato waste compost and peat at 2.5 Mrad reduced microorganism density by four orders of magnitude, but irradiation of tomato waste compost did not reduce its suppressiveness of V. dahliae. Composts properties affected progress rate of VD in the xylem tissue of eggplant seedling. These properties could indicate both biotic and abiotic factors affecting the process.