2016 Volume 31 Issue 3 Pages 307-313
Soil-borne diseases caused by pathogenic microorganisms are one of the main factors responsible for the decline in crop yields in farmlands. Pathogenic Fusarium oxysporum causes serious damage to various crops, and, thus, a feasible diagnostic method for soil-borne diseases is required. We herein examined a simple method to evaluate the suppressiveness of soil microorganisms against a pathogen by co-cultivating indigenous soil microorganisms and a pathogenic fungus (F. oxysporum f. sp. spinaciae). We inoculated F. oxysporum onto the center of agar medium plates mixed with a dilution series of a suspension of organic fertilizers or soil. After an approximately one-week cultivation, the growth degree of F. oxysporum was estimated based on the size of the colonies that formed on the plates. The growth degree of F. oxysporum significantly differed among the organic fertilizers tested, indicating the usefulness of the method for evaluating suppressiveness by organic fertilizers. Differences in the growth degrees of F. oxysporum were associated with the incidence of disease in spinach on soil treated with organic fertilizers and inoculated with a pathogenic F. oxysporum strain. These results suggested that this method provides some useful information on the suppressiveness of organic fertilizers and soil against Fusarium wilt.