EFFECTIVENESS OF SIX ROOTSTOCKS FOR FUSARIUM WILT CONTROL IN CUCUMBER AND THEIR INFLUENCE ON GROWTH YIELD AND FRUIT QUALITY CHARACTERISTICS
A.M. Papadaki, F.A. Bletsos, G. Menexes, A.M. Moustafa Ismail, A.L. Lagopodi
Six rootstocks were evaluated against fusarium wilt of cucumber, in a greenhouse experiment, in two successive years. The susceptible Cretan cv. ‘Knossos’ was grafted on the commercial Cucurbita interspecific hybrid rootstocks ‘Leon’, ‘Mirage’, ‘Mammoth’, ‘Vivere’, and on species Cycios angulatus and Lagenaria ciseraria. Self-grafted plants of cv. ‘Knossos’ were used as controls. Disease severity, plant growth, yield, and fruit quality characteristics were compared in 27 cucumber plants from each rootstock-scion combination, artificially inoculated with Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. cucumerinum. Plants grafted on all tested rootstocks were significantly more resistant to fusarium wilt than self-grafted controls. In addition, all of the tested rootstocks prevented vigor and yield loss in diseased plants. Positive influence on stem length and root biomass was observed by all rootstocks, in both healthy and diseased plants, as compared to the control, but effects were not consistent in the two different years, except for root biomass in healthy plants. In the presence of the pathogen rootstocks increased yield, compared to the control. None of the tested rootstocks affected fruit quality characteristics.