Biofumigation: A Cover Crop Option 12 Months of the Year to Manage Three Soilborne Pathogens Ailing the Australian Vegetable Industry


Cover cropping
Sclerotium rolfsii
Sclerotinia sclerotiorum
Macrophomina phaseolina

How to Cite

Duff J, Firrell M. Biofumigation: A Cover Crop Option 12 Months of the Year to Manage Three Soilborne Pathogens Ailing the Australian Vegetable Industry. Glob. J. Agric. Innov. Res. Dev [Internet]. 2021 Nov. 15 [cited 2022 Nov. 27];8:104-16. Available from:


Brassica biofumigant cover crops are being increasingly considered in vegetable crop rotations as part of an integrated disease management strategy and simply as a cover cropping choice. Nine biofumigant varieties were assessed to see if they could be grown year-round in the Lockyer Valley South East Queensland region, for yield, days to incorporation and glucosinolate concentrations, as well as efficacy against 3 soilborne pathogens; Sclerotinia sclerotiorum, Sclerotium rolfsii and Macrophomina phaseolina. The fastest growing brassica biofumigant was BQ Mulch which reached 25% flowering in 36 and 59 days from planting to incorporation with a summer and winter planting respectively. Nemcon and Nemclear took the longest to incorporation when planted in summer, 101 days and failed to flower, while Caliente, Tillage Radish and Biofum reached 25% flowering and incorporation in 98 days when planted in winter. BQ Mulch produced the least amount of biomass, 30.93 t/ha fresh weight and 2.92 t/ha dry weight with a summer planting. Biofum producing the greatest amount of biomass, 185.76 t/ha fresh weight and 17.34 t/ha dry weight with a summer and winter planting respectively. Most varieties produced more total glucosinolates during summer compared to winter. Caliente produced the highest levels of Total GSLs with 53.47 µmol/g DW in summer compared to 23.78 µmol/g DW in winter. This was reflected in their efficacy against the soilborne pathogens. Caliente and Mustclean were more efficacious at controlling Macrophomina and Sclerotinia in summer compared to winter while all varieties were more efficacious at controlling Sclerotinia with a summer planting compared to a winter planting.


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