The fungus Trichoderma spp. on vegetables Anne Winding, National Environmental Research Institute, Roskilde, AU Trichoderma spp. is a naturally occurring fungus in soil and T. harzianum is an active ingredient in microbial pest control agents (MPCA) active against root pathogenic fungi. The MPCA is administered to the plants by watering. The fungus establishes in the root zone and exerts its beneficial effect by general increase of resistance against pathogenic fungi. The natural occurrence of Trichoderma spp. and the fate and survival of the introduced T. harzianum on vegetables are important for risk assessment of MPCA and are the objectives of this project. Trichoderma spp. on tomatoes and cucumbers grown in greenhouses and on broccoli and celery leaf grown outdoors were quantified during a growth season. A MPCA with T. harzianum was applied in a greenhouse growing tomatoes. Trichoderma spp. was enumerated by culturing on semi-selective media and colonies identified by morphology and specific PCR-amplification. Culturable Trichoderma spp. was not found on any of the ca. 150 vegetables examined. Presence of DNA from Trichoderma spp. and from the specific T. harzianum in uncultured samples is currently being tested.
Main Research Area:
Internal AU Food Research Day at Aarhus Univerity, 2008