Cigar End Rot of Banana

Cigar end rot is an important disease of banana, which is caused by the fungus Verticillium theobromae. The disease is prevalent in almost all banana-growing tracts and affects the developing fingers. It causes a dry rot of the flower end that produces an ash grey wrinkled lesion on the banana fingers, similar to the burnt end of a cigar.

Cigar end rot is an important disease of banana, which is caused by the fungus Verticillium theobromae.

The disease is prevalent in almost all banana growing tracts and affects the developing fingers. It causes a dry rot of the flower end that produces an ash grey wrinkled lesion on the banana fingers, similar to the burnt end of a cigar.

In storage or during transport the disease may progress to involve the whole fruit.

DISEASE CYCLE

The pathogen enters the banana finger through the flower causing a dry rot which spreads from the flower into the tip of immature banana fingers.

Spores/conidia are spread majorly by air currents and infection is common in the early days of fruit emergence.

The rotted portion of the banana finger tends to adhere to fruits appearing similar to the ash of a cigar.

As the fruit develops, the infection spreads slowly along with the fruit growth causing blackening of the skin.

Tip of the infected fingers later gets covered with a powdery mass of spores resembling grey ash end of a cigar. 

The disease is common in warm moist conditions especially in high altitude areas and plantations with excessive shade.

SYMPTOMS

A black necrosis spread from the perianth into the tip of immature fingers.
The pulp of the infected fruit undergoes a dry rot, which spreads from the tip and such fingers are readily rejected in the market.
The corrugated necrotic tissue become covered with the mycelia of the fungi and resembles the greyish ash of the cigar-end.
If emerging fingers are affected, the entire fingers sometimes get rotten.

DISEASE MANAGEMENT

The control of cigar end rot is very much important in banana cultivation as this helps reduce and/or prevent losses attributed to its infection.

Several methods/practices are employed in the management of the disease. These include the following;

Chemical methods

Relevant fungicides are used in prevention and eradication of cigar end rot of bananas. They include;

  • RANSOM 600WP 15g/20l
  • ABSOLUTE 375SC 10ml/20l
  • EXEMPO CURVE 250SC 15ml/20l
  • EXPLORER 3 SL 10ml/20l
  • KATERINA 720SC 40ml/20l
  • MEGAPRODE LOCK 525WP 20g/20l
  • MILESTONE 250SC 10ml/20l
  • PROVIDENCE 400WP 50g/20l
  • RIMETA GOLD 300SC 40ml/20l
  • TRINITY GOLD 425WP 50g/20l
  • CHARIOT 500SC 20ml/20l

Non-chemical control methods

  • Use disease free and healthy planting materials
  • Field sanitation, such as the removal of dead, hanging leaves from plants, reduces inoculum level.
  • Packing stations and ripening room should be kept clean to minimize the chances of post-harvest infestation.
  • Infected fingers should be removed immediately
  • Avoid damage to the fruit and deflower 8-11 days after fruit bunch emergence.
  • Bagging of maturing banana stems.
  • Remove the untransformed flowers after the finger emergence

Note;

  • Fungicides should be mixed with INTEGRA 3ml/20l whenever spraying, which improves the efficacy of the fungicide by acting as a sticker, spreader, wetter and penetrant.
  • Alternating different fungicides throughout a plant’s season prevents the fungus from developing resistance over any of the fungicides.
  • Timely control of the diseases is very crucial as it prevents/reduces losses attributed to infections with cigar end rot.
  • Fungicides should be reapplied after 1-2weeks.
  • A proper nutrition boosts plant’s immunity.

Last updated on Friday, March 10, 2023 at 5:45 pm

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