Influence of neem on susceptibility of Beauveria bassiana and investigation of their combined efficacy against sweetpotato whitefly, Bemisia tabaci on eggplant
Md. Touhidul Islam, Aref Olleka, Shunxiang Ren
Engineering Research Center of Biological Control, Ministry of Education, College of Natural Resource and Environment, South China Agricultural University, Guangzhou 510642, PR China.
A study on the compatibility of the entomopathogenic fungus Beauveria bassiana with neem was conducted against sweetpotato whitefly, Bemisia tabaci, on eggplant. Initially, three concentrations of neem (0.25%, 0.5% and 1.0%) were used to investigate the physiological responses of B. bassiana. Thereafter, above three concentrations of neem along with three concentrations of B. bassiana (106, 107 and 108 conidia/ml) were used to investigate combined deterrence index, DI under two application methods (foliar and soil) of B. tabaci. Significant differences were observed among neem concentrations on all variables- germination percentage, vegetative growth, number of conidia, amount of biomass and proteolytic activity of B. bassiana. The reduction percentage of germination, vegetative growth, sporulation, biomass production and proteolytic activity of B. bassiana were as high as 12%, 13%, 35%, 38%, and 34%, respectively, to neem. Significant differences were also observed on deterrence index, DI (adult and oviposition) of B. tabaci. The current study investigated that the highest adult DI (80.15) and oviposition DI (88.25) occurred when 1.0% neem was combined with 108 conidia/ml of B. bassiana. As the results show, neem is compatible with B. bassiana; and soil application of neem along with foliar application of B. bassiana might be useful for the control of B. tabaci.