A blog maintained by Tevita Kete, PGR Officer
Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC), Suva, Fiji Islands
This weblog documents the activities of Pacific Agricultural Genetic Resources Network (PAPGREN), along with other information on plant genetic resources (PGR) in the Pacific.
The myriad varieties found within cultivated plants are fundamental to the present and future productivity of agriculture. PAPGREN, which is coordinated by the Land Resources Division of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC), helps Pacific countries and territories to conserve their crop genetic diversity sustainably, with technical assistance from the Bioversity International (BI) and support from NZAID and ACIAR.
SPC also hosts the Centre of Pacific Crops and Trees (CEPaCT). The CEPaCT maintains regional in vitro collections of crops important to the Pacific and carries out research on tissue culture technology. The CEPaCT Adviser is Dr Mary Taylor (MaryT@spc.int), the CEPaCT Curator is Ms Valerie Tuia (ValerieT@spc.int).
PAPGREN coordination and support
Mr William Wigmore
Mr Adelino S. Lorens
Dr Lois Englberger
Mr Apisai Ucuboi
Dr Maurice Wong
Mr Tianeti Beenna Ioane
Mr Frederick Muller
Mr Herman Francisco
Ms Rosa Kambuou
Ms Laisene Samuelu
Mr Jimi Saelea
Mr Tony Jansen
Mr Finao Pole
Mr Frazer Bule Lehi
Interested in GIS?
Monday, February 28, 2005
Posted 1:56 PM by Luigi
Betel Nut Tree Fungus Resurfaces in CNMI
The news item in the Saipan Tribune reproduced below prompted the following comment from Konrad Englberger, SPC Plant Protection Officer in Micronesia: This is bad news that the betel nut disease is back in CNMI. Some reports indicated that the disease was eradicated from CNMI, apparently this was wrong. I suppose the same will apply for Guam. FSM and Palau should be alerted of this destructive disease. FSM has a 2 million dollar betel nut export industry. We need to discuss if we should introduce a Clorox dip on shoes for people who visited farms/country in CNMI and Guam.
Saipan Tribune/Pacnews: Monday, February 14, 2005
The fungus Phytophthora meadii, which causes the Betel Nut Bud Rot Disease, has resurfaced and has already killed over 150 betel nut trees on Saipan.
According to agricultural consultant Isidoro T. Cabrera of the Northern Marianas College Cooperate Research, Extension and Education Service, the disease has already affected trees in an area in Papago and two areas in Capitol Hill.
Cabrera discovered the spread Friday during a survey around the island. The disease also destroyed thousands of trees on Guam from late 2003 to 2004, raising concerns from growers who depend on the sales generated from the betel nut.
Cabrera said the disease spreads during rainy season, especially if a typhoon is experienced. "That's the optimum time for the disease to start spreading," he said. "It takes high humidity, wind, and heavy rain for this disease to actually rejuvenate."
He said the disease was dormant for years because the island was not hit by a typhoon, but may have resurfaced because of the wet weather experienced last year, with Typhoon Tingting and Supertyphoon Chaba striking the island.
The fungus produces microscopic spores that are easily blown around and dispersed in the wind and rain. It is carried to other neighboring trees and infects them.
Once the spores are blown and has the right humidity and temperature, that's how the other trees are infected. It continues to spread to neighboring areas.
After a month-long incubation stage on the newly infected tree, symptoms of the disease will then appear and the tree will die in about another month.
Symptoms of the fungal infection include lesions on the leaves, dead young leaves or deterioration of the green part of the plant at the base of the leaves. Cabrera said once infected, a tree has no chance of survival. He suggested that the next best thing to do is to cut the tree and burn to prevent the disease from spreading.
* Comments:Post a Comment
Agrobiodiversity Weblog: For discussions of conservation and sustainable use of the genetic resources of crops, livestock and their wild relatives.