Department of Plant Pathology

About the Department:

                        The Department of Plant Pathology at the College of Agriculture, Dharwad came into being in 1949 to teach the subject of Plant Pathology to the final year students of B.Sc. (Agri.) course.  Post-graduate teaching in Plant Pathology was started in 1953 while the college was affiliated to Karnataka University, Dharwad. By the time the College was taken over by the University of Agricultural Sciences, Bangalore in 1965, the department had produced 38 M.Sc. graduates. Gratifyingly, most of these post-graduates pursued their doctoral studies elsewhere and have occupied important positions. With the amalgamation of the then existing department of Agricultural Bacteriology with the department of plant pathology in 1953, the latter had to shoulder this added responsibility. Because of the excellent background the students got both in Agricultural Bacteriology and Plant Pathology, the post-graduate students from this department performed very well even when they pursued studies in Agricultural Microbiology, Indeed, the first  few doctoral students in Agricultural Microbiology of UAS, Bangalore happened to be post-graduate students of this department.

                        Conventional teaching was replaced by trimester system with the affiliation of the College to UAS, Bangalore in 1965 at which time, two Assistant Professors and two Instructors offered various courses in Plant Pathology for under-graduates and minor courses to post-graduates.  Full-fledged post-graduation programme under trimester system of teaching started in 1973 with the appointment of a Professor.  A post each of Associate Professor and Assistant Professor cadre was added at different times to the staff to meet the increasing teaching demands due to offering of different courses to under-graduates in Agriculture, Agricultural Marketing and Co-operation and Forestry.  The Department has produced 264 post-graduates, of which 41 are Ph.D. students. Presently, the department is offering 28 PG courses and six under-graduate courses under recently introduced semester system of teaching.  The department was first headed by Dr. R.S. Deshpande (1949-66), Dr. H. R. Reddy (1966-70), Prof. B. C. Narayana Swamy (1970-72), Dr. K. H. Anahosur (1972-73), Dr. R. S. Deshpande (1973-75), Dr. R. K. Hegde (1975-87), Dr. K. H. Anahosur (1987) ; Dr. Srikant Kulkarni  (2001-2008); Dr. V. I. Benagi (2008-2011); Dr. S. Lingaraju (2011-2014); Dr. A. S. Bydagi (2014-2017); Dr. M. S. Patil (2017 to 2020); Dr. Yashoda Hegde (2020 to March, 2023); Presently it is headed by Dr. S. I. Harlapur (April, 2023 to till date).

Research Highlights:

  • Sowing of bajra before 15th June helped to escape ergot disease.
  • Du-Ter @ 0.1 per cent was effective in controlling tikka of groundnut
  • mancozeb @ 0.2 per cent + Carbendazim @ 0.1 per cent was recommended to control rust and tikka groundnut.
  • Seed treatment of groundnut with captan /thiram @ 2 g/kg effectively managed seed and seedling diseases.
  • Seed treatment with Trichoderma harzianum @ 4 g/kg has shown promise in controlling stem rot (Sclerotium rolfsii) of groundnut.
  • Both leaf spot and rust of groundnut are effectively controlled by chlorothalonil @ 0.2 per cent and also by cyperconazole @ 0.1 per cent.
  • Bud necrosis of groundnut is effectively managed through 2 sprays of sorghum leaf extract and one spray of monocrotophos.
  • Sunflower downy mildew is effectively controlled by seed treatment with Apron 35 WS @ 3g/kg.
  • Downy mildew of sorghum and maize is managed through seed treatment with Apron 35 WS @ 3g/kg.
  • Sowing sorghum before 15 June escapes ergot disease.
  • Sorghum rust and other foliar diseases and also turcicum blight of maize are controlled by 0.2 per cent mancozeb spray.
  • Grain smut of sorghum is controlled by seed treatment with sulphur @ 2g/kg.
  • 9-13 (DSV) was developed for resistance to charcoal rot coupled with high yield and released for cultivation.
  • Soybean rust is profitably managed by spraying hexaconazole @ 0.05 per cent.
  • Carboxin @ 0.25 per cent as seed dresser to control foot rot and loose smut of wheat.
  • Rust resistant varieties, viz., HD-2189, dWR-16, DWR-39, DWR-137, HD-4502 have been released.
  • Mancozeb was effective for managing rust and leaf blight of wheat.
  • Powdery mildew and leaf spot of greengram was effectively controlled by carbendazim @ 0.1 per cent.
  • Powdery mildew of chilli was effectively controlled by carbendazim @0.1 per cent.
  • Early blight and leaf blight of potato and leaf blight of onion was controlled by mancozeb
  • Koleroga of arecanut is effectively managed through spraying the bunch with 1 per cent bordeaux mixtgure and subsequently covering with ploythene sheet.
  • Powdery mildew of manago ies effectively controlled by Carbendazim 0.1 per cent followed by 0.3 per cent wettable sulphur.
  • Bacterial leaf blight of mango is controlled effective by spraying with Paushamyein 200 ppm + Copper oxychloride @ 0.3 per cent.

Ad-hoc Projects in Operation:

  • Epidemiology and control of groundnut rust.
  • Assessment of crop losses due to pests and diseases of major crops.
  • Epidemiology and management of cucurbit downy mildew.
  • Studies on leaf blight of wheat caused by Exserohilum hawaiiensis.
  • Epidemiology and management of late leaf spot of groundnut caused by Phaeoisoriopsis personata.
  • Management of foot rot of black pepper through soil solarization.
  • Studies on seed mycoflora of shattering and non-shattering types of green gram.
  • Studies on mosaic disease complex of chilli in North Karnataka
  • Studies on Heterodera cajani in pigeonpea.

            The department of Plant Pathology is playing an important role in extension activities.  The staff have been doing advisory work on plant disease control in different ways such as examination of diseased samples received from farmers and staff of development departments, field visits, organising the training programmes for extension personnel and progressive farmers, participation in the field days and farm seminar arranged by KSDA officials and various input agencies, thus sharing the results of research to the benefit of extension workers and farmers. The staff have brought out several pamphlets on many diseases. They regularly take part in agricultural extension programme, bi-monthly meetings and demonstrations.  They effectively disseminate the technologies through AIR programmes also.  The staff actively associate with the Extension Education Units of the University and Directorate of Extension and this interaction has resulted in an effective extension service

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