Variations in the level of resistance to root-knot nematodes (Meloidogyne spp.) infestation among ten cowpeas (Vigna unguiculata L. Walp.) genotypes
The cultivation of cowpea (Vigna unguiculata L. Walp.) cultivars that are tolerant to root-knot nematode attack is among the environmentally safe approach to managing the root-knot nematode menace in cultivated crops. In this study, the tolerance of 10 cowpea genotypes to root-knot nematodes infestation was evaluated in a pot experiment conducted in a Screenhouse, at the University for Development Studies, Nyankpala Campus. The experiment was laid out in a completely randomized design with three replications. The number of second stage juveniles (J2) per 250 cm3 of soil sample were counted while the severity of root-knot nematode damage (root galls) was assessed. The reproduction index (RI) was used to classify the varieties as resistant or susceptible. There was a significant difference (P < 0.05) in the number of second stage juveniles of root-knot nematode (RKN), galling index and RI among the genotypes tested. The study revealed that cowpea genotypes SARI 1-4-90, Padi tuya, Songotra, IT99K-1122, Sanzi and Apagbaala were moderately resistant whereas cowpea genotypes IT86D-610, Zaayura, SARI 5-5-5 and IT07K-299-6 were slightly resistant. Thus, the six moderately resistant cowpea genotypes were suggested to be used as a source of resistance to RKN in future breeding works.