- Agronomic: peanuts
- Crop Production: cover crops
This project studies the effect of using nematode-resistant cover crops (white and red clover, triticale, wheat and rye) to suppress the root-knot nematode populations on peanut production. The study was established at Plant Science Research and Education Unit in North-Central Florida. The whole project includes two experimental fields: one under root-knot nematode infestation, and the control under normal condition (no nematodes). Prior to the beginning of the cover crop establishment one of the two fields was artificially inoculated with nematodes affecting peanut. Roots from peanut under nematode infestation were collected and used for inoculation. Roots were incorporated in October 2014 and cover crops were planted in November 2014. Soil samples were taken after the establishment of cover crops to get an evaluation of initial nematode population, and then every two months, followed the time schedule proposed. In March 2015, the height and percentage coverage of cover crops were visually rated. In April 2015, the weed coverage percentage was evaluated to reflect the competitiveness of different cover crops against weeds. On April 21st 2015, the cover crops will be harvested and samples will be collected to get nutritional and dry matter yield estimation. On the beginning of May, peanut will be established on the same plots as cover crops and before that, the soil samples will be collected and sent to get bioassays on the nematode population. Peanut yield and grade will be evaluated at peanut harvest. In October the whole experiment will repeat by a second year in the same plots to study the long-term effect of the cover plots.
Project objectives from proposal:
- Evaluate the root-knot nematode (RKN) suppression of nematode resistant winter cover crop cultivars in a peanut production rotation system.
- Measure the effects of winter RKN resistant cover crops on subsequent peanut yield.
- Provide recommendations to farmers about usage of cover crops based on both nematode infestation conditions and weed seed banks.