Resistance-inducing chemicals can offer broad-spectrum disease protection in crops, but can also affect plant growth and interactions with plant-beneficial microbes. We have evaluated different application methods of β-aminobutyric acid (BABA) and jasmonic acid (JA) for long-lasting induced resistance in tomato against Botrytis cinerea. In addition, we have studied nontarget effects on plant growth and root colonization by arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF). Germinating seeds for 1 week in BABA- or JA-containing solutions promoted seed germination efficiency, did not affect plant growth, and induced resistance in 4-week-old plants. When formulating BABA and JA in carboxymethyl cellulose seed coating, only BABA was able to induce resistance in 4-week-old plants. Root treatment of 1-week-old seedlings with BABA or JA also induced resistance in 4-week-old plants. However, this seedling treatment repressed plant growth at higher concentrations of the chemicals, which was particularly pronounced in hydroponically grown plants after BABA treatment. Both seed coating with BABA, and seedling treatments with BABA or JA, did not affect AMF root colonization in soil-grown tomato. Our study has identified commercially feasible application methods of BABA and JA, which induce durable disease resistance in tomato without concurrent impacts on plant growth or colonization by plant-beneficial AMF.
|Early online date||1 Feb 2016|
|Publication status||Published - Apr 2016|