Effect of pesticidal weed extracts and soil solarization on soil health and management of onion white rot (Sclerotium cepivorus).
A field experiment was conducted to evaluate effect of treatments on soil health and management of white rot which reduces onion yield. The treatments were control, tebuconazole, soil solarization and pesticidal weed extracts (Argemone mexicana, Parthenium hysterophorus, Tagetes minuta & Salvia aethiopis). Result showed that population density of beneficial soil microorganisms were recorded high in soils incorporated with P. hysterophorus when compared with soils incorporated with tebuconazole and solarization. Low percentages of disease incidence (3.3%) and severity (16%) were recorded in solarized plots as compared to control (11.7% and 65%, respectively). Application of tebuconazole, T. minuta and solarization increased yield of onion to 12, 11.95 and 10.6 tonnes ha-1, respectively compared with untreated plot (8.03 tonnes ha-1). Thus, soil solarization and pesticidal weeds can be contributed to increase soil health and to the control of white rot diseases, and can be used as an alternative to the chemical pesticides.