Agron. Sustain. Dev.
Volume 25, Number 4, October-December 2005
Page(s) 417 - 423
Agron. Sustain. Dev. 25 (2005) 417-423
DOI: 10.1051/agro:2005040

Microwave oven as a clean technology for the eradication of fusariosis in melon

M.L. Soriano-Martín, A. Porras-Piedra, A. Porras-Soriano, I. Marcilla-Goldaracena and M.L. Porras-Soriano

Escuela Universitaria de Ingeniería Técnica Agrícola, Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha, Ronda de Calatrava, 13071 Ciudad Real, Spain

(Accepted 1 July 2005)

Abstract - The causal agent of Fusarium wilt in melon (Cucumis melo) is the fungus Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. melonis. One of the main ways in which this fungus is transferred is the re-use of propagation trays in nursery greenhouses. This work shows that, during the commercial production of melon plantlets, subjecting these trays to microwave energy in a prototype oven can eradicate this fungus. The low energy performance of this oven would increase the price of seedlings by only 6.25 × 10-3 Eurocents over the current market price of 19 Eurocents per plant. Since this method obviates the need for pesticides, it also affords environmental advantages.

Key words: Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. melonis / high frequency microwaves / artificial substrate / propagation trays / disinfestation

Corresponding author: M.L. Soriano-Martín

© INRA, EDP Sciences 2005