Cropping Systems to Control Tropical Soil-Borne Pests in Dryland-Grown Taro

Project Overview

Project Type: Research and Education
Funds awarded in 2003: $257,827.00
Projected End Date: 12/31/2007
Matching Non-Federal Funds: $28,875.00
Region: Western
State: Hawaii
Principal Investigator:
Dr. Susan Miyasaka
University of Hawaii

Annual Reports


  • Vegetables: taro


  • Education and Training: demonstration, on-farm/ranch research, participatory research
  • Farm Business Management: whole farm planning
  • Pest Management: botanical pesticides
  • Production Systems: integrated crop and livestock systems
  • Soil Management: green manures, soil quality/health

    Proposal abstract:

    Fifty five taro (Colocasia esculenta) cultivars were evaluated for resistance to the root-knot nematode, Meloidogyne javanica. Although all cultivars were hosts, significant differences in the reproductive success of M. javanica were found within the taro germplasm. Ten green manure species were evaluated in the greenhouse for biomass growth and resistance to M. javanica, and four promising green manure species were identified. Two experimental sites are being pre-conditioned to increase levels of M. javanica using buckwheat or taro. Preliminary research demonstrated that soil DNA can be extracted, amplified with bacterial 16s rDNA primers, and used to tentatively identify soil bacterial populations.

    Project objectives from proposal:

    1. 1. Determine resistance/tolerance of newly introduced taro germplasm against root-knot nematodes. 2. Evaluate biomass potential of green manure crops, resistance to root-knot nematodes and Pythium, and nematicidal or fungicidal activities of decomposition products. 3. Determine the best management practices for green manure crops. 4. Assess the impact of green manure crops on soil bacterial, fungal, and nematode communities in the field. 5. Conduct effective educational outreach to disseminate project information to taro growers.
    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.