Title: Effects of Essential Oils on a Biocontrol Fungus
Mentors: Dr. Vladimir Protopopescu (Mathematics), Dr. Xavier Thibert-Plante (Mathematics), and Dr. Kimberly Gwinn (Plant Pathology)
Effective environmentally-friendly tools for disease and insect pest management are needed for use in sustainable agriculture. Our laboratory has shown that bioactive herbages (dried, ground leaves of Monarda spp.) that contain specific essential oils protect tomato against damping-off diseases. We have optimized seed treatment with Beauveria bassiana and demonstrated that plants derived from treated seed are protected from seedling diseases and insects. Although natural products and entomopathogenic fungi play significant roles in sustainable production, there is little data on the compatibility of these agents. In preliminary studies we have demonstrated that some of the essential oils impact the spore germination and subsequent growth of B. bassiana. The specific aim of the NIMBioS REU project is to produce models that capture the impact of essential oils from bioactive herbage on germination and growth of B. bassiana. These models will be used to predict compatibility of technologies.
Return to REU/REV 2011.