“CucCAP2: Harnessing genomic resources for disease resistance and management in cucurbit crops – bringing the tools to the field”, will focus on the development of advanced genomic, bioinformatic and breeding tools; disease resistant materials; disease management strategies and economic analyses for critical diseases threatening cucurbit production.
CucCAP scientists and other researchers authored reports in the 2019 Cucurbit Genetics Cooperative (CGC) report which was published in September 2020.
In a recent study, CucCAP researchers used a digital imaging technology to evaluate the root systems in 335 watermelon accessions.
How can growers living with this devastating disease of cucurbits, peppers and tomatoes produce a harvestable crop? Dr. Smart works on the “Phytophthora farm” at Cornell University, land which is dedicated to researching solutions growers can use to deal with this disease.
“Pseudoperonospora cubensis has two types of isolates or clades that preferentially infect certain cucurbit crops. In North Carolina, clade 2 isolates preferentially infect cucumbers and cantaloupes, while clade 1 isolates preferentially infect squash, pumpkin, and watermelon.”
“This disease can occur anywhere throughout the eastern US, even in a garden with just one cucumber plant and no past occurrences. This is because the pathogen spreads via wind-dispersed spores that can be moved long distances and be deposited by chance anywhere.”
Squash, cucumbers, and pumpkins experienced disease pressure from plant viruses, powdery mildew, fusarium, and phytophthora in Michigan during the week of August 13 to 19, 2020.
CucCAP researchers identified a major QTL associated with sulfur tolerance in a melon mapping population. Genetic markers were developed for the major QTL and can be used to incorporate sulfur tolerance in melon breeding programs.