S.G. Bobev , D.K. Kehajov, M. Maes, K. Willekens , M.A. Bost
The influence of substrate on the response of strawberry plants to air-borne diseases and pests was assessed during the months of July through October of 2003 and 2004 in ILVO, Belgium. In both cases, plants of cultivar ‘Elsanta’ were grown for about four months in plastic containers with peat/compost mixes, and in parallel, in a conventional and widely used substrate, consisting of peat and pellets of mineral fertiliser. In the first month, the plants were rooted outside, and grown later on in a greenhouse with a droplet irrigation system. The results from the first test period revealed significant control of damages caused by gray mold (Botrytis cinerea), powdery mildew (Sphaerotheca macularis), mites (Tetranychus urticae) and aphids (Chaetosiphon fragaefolii) in the compost substrates. The utilization of two other compost substrates in the 2004 test period confirmed the previously outlined beneficial tendency. Grey mold incidence on the mature fruits grown on compost was reduced by up to 26%, and was also associated with a notable inhibition of the fungus sporulation, entirely prevented on the immature fruits as well. Powdery mildew incidence was approximately thirty times lower on compost-grown plants compared to the conventionally grown plants. The natural infestation with mites and aphids became epidemic in the conventionally grown plants, while its occurrence was an exception on the neighbouring compost-plants. The leaf and petiole resistance of the compost-plants persisted during the whole test period, while the conventional plants were completely colonized and destroyed by powdery mildew and mites.
Bobev , S.G., Kehajov, D.K., Maes, M., Willekens , K. and Bost, M.A. (2012). COMPOST INFLUENCE ON SOME AIR-BORNE DISEASES AND PESTS IN STRAWBERRY. Acta Hortic. 927, 959-966
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2012.927.118
Botrytis cinerea, Sphaerotheca macularis, Tetranychus urticae, Chaetosiphon fragaefolii, alternative control, disease prevention, pest suppression

Acta Horticulturae