Evaluation of enset clones against enset bacterial wilt

  • G Welde-Michael
  • K Bobosha
  • G Blomme
  • T Addis
  • T Mengesha
  • S Mekonnen
Keywords: Ensete, resistance, susceptibility, ventricosum, Xanthomonas campestris pv. musacearum


Enset (Ensete ventricosum Welw. Cheesman) is an important food crop for over 20% of the Ethiopian population living in the southern and southwestern parts of the country. Enset farmers commonly grow combinations of clones in fields, but each clone is grown for its specific use. A large number of enset clones collected from the Sidama, Gurage, Kembata Tembaro and Hadyia zones were assessed for resistance/tolerance to enset bacterial wilt, Xanthomonas campestris pv. musacearum (Xcm) at the Awassa Agricultural Research Center, Awassa in Ethiopia, during the period 1994 to 2000. In addition, some enset clones that were reported by farmers and researchers as tolerant to Xcm were evaluated during the same period. The objective of the study was to screen field-grown enset clones collected from different zones of southern Ethiopia, for reaction against the wilt. All
Xcm inoculated enset clones in each of the experiments developed disease symptoms to various intensity levels during the first 45 days after inoculation. However, several enset clones showed relative tolerance to the disease. The enset clones ‘Astara’, ‘Buffare’, ‘Geziwet 2’, ‘Gulumo’ and ‘Kullo’ showed 100% disease symptoms at 30
days after inoculation and could, hence, be used as susceptible checks in future screening trials. Disease symptoms were observed on ‘Mezya’, ‘Hiniba’, ‘Sorpie’ and ‘Sigezasarum’, between 21 and 75 days after inoculation. However, some plants resumed normal growth at 90 days after inoculation. The enset clones that showed a resistant and/or tolerant reaction to the wilt pathogen should be further evaluated against a large number of Xcm isolates under greenhouse and field conditions.

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eISSN: 2072-6589
print ISSN: 1021-9730