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Keywords:

  • clubroot;
  • green waste compost;
  • moisture content;
  • spent mushroom compost;
  • temperature

Survival of infectious inoculum of the clubroot pathogen Plasmodiophora brassicae was assessed following bench-scale flask composting experiments and large-scale composting procedures. Clubroot-affected material was provided by artificial inoculation of Chinese cabbage or naturally infected Brussels sprout and cabbage roots. Both sets of diseased material were used in flask experiments, and the latter in large-scale windrow and aerated tunnel experiments. Municipal green wastes, onion waste and spent mushroom compost were evaluated in flask experiments with varying temperature, aeration and moisture conditions. Green wastes were used in larger-scale composts. Within the limits of a Chinese cabbage seedling bioassay, both temperature and moisture content were critical for eradication of P. brassicae spores extracted from composted clubroot-affected residues. Incubation in compost at 50°C for 7 days or 1 day at 60°C with high moisture levels (= −5 kPa matric potential or 60% w/w moisture content) eradicated inoculum from artificially inoculated Chinese cabbage roots. In large-scale windrows and aerated tunnels, the pathogen was eradicated from naturally infected brassica wastes after 6–7 days at 54–73°C.