[These are Peer-reviewed, Revised and Accepted articles, but not yet assigned to an issue]
 Impacts of nitrogen on plant disease severity and plant defense mechanism: a review
Department of Plant Pathology, Faculty of Agriculture, Agriculture and Forestry University, Rampur, Chitwan, NEPAL
Nitrogen(N) is considered the most important factor to help the growth and development of plants. This is the building block for plant protoplasm and the chlorophyll molecule component for the photosynthesis process as well. Although it is apparent that the availability of N affects disease, the underlying mechanisms remain unknown. Many data indicate that the greater use of N fertilizers affected crop disease incidence. In comparison, cases are also recorded in which a decrease in N fertilization increases the severity of the disease, suggesting a complex relationship between them. N plays a significant role in regulating signaling networks that are active in reacting to a broad variety of biotic and abiotic stresses. In terms of physical, biochemical, and molecular mechanisms, the relationship between N and plant defense is considered. N has negative effects on physical defenses and the development of anti-microbial phytoalexins, but positive effects on defense-related enzymes and proteins that influence both local defense and systemic resistance. These all factors are implicated in plant defense signaling pathways but their role in plant defense is less well studied. This review aims to explain current knowledge of pathways connecting plant N status with the plant disease severity and plant defense. While this analysis highlights the crucial role of N nutrition in plant defense, further research is desperately required to provide a thorough overview of how interacting networks affect competing virulence and defense mechanisms.
Keywords: Nitrogen, Disease severity, Plant defense, Physical defense, Biochemical defense, Molecular defense
 Glorious Past, Challenging Present and Bright Future of Jute, the Golden Fibre of Bangladesh: A review
Md Mahbubul Islam
Bangladesh Jute Research Institute, Dhaka-1207, BANGLADESH
This Article depicts a historical picture of glorious past, challenging present and bright future of jute, which called the golden fibre of Bangladesh. Jute, a natural fiber, has been in use for various purposes over the centuries throughout the world. It is the bark of a slender tropical plant belonging to Tiliaceae family with two species Corchorus capsularis L. and Corchorus olitorius L. Breakthrough in textile technology during the industrial revolution helped jute emerges as an amazing fabric from its traditional image of a raw material for cordage and rope. About two-thirds of the world’s jute was produced in Bangladesh until 1950 and in the late sixties it’s production was about 75 per cent of the world’s raw jute supply while, on the other hand, of the world’s raw jute production the country share fell to between 29%-32% in the period 1970-77. A picture of the jute grower and jute price in British-India, Pakistan and Bangladesh that prevailed in the past and are prevailing today to realize to our surprise that nothing has changed in these three periods as far as the return to the grower and its price relative to the cost of producing jute are concerned. The causes of fall of the jute industry in Bangladesh were mismanagement, pilferage, lootings, deprivations and other shameless activities that were rampant in jute industry. However, good news for the jute growers and jute traders was that, in the northern areas of Bangladesh about 19 mini-jute mills were being successfully run by using the relinquished instruments of the Adamjee Jute Mill. The Jute sector provided employment opportunity to a large number of people in different regions of Bangladesh in some rural areas, where employment opportunities in the manufacturing sectors were limited. There are so many future scopes of jute in agricultural and in industrial areas. A vertically integrated production chain needs to be considered for jute and the jute manufacturing sector of Bangladesh. Marketing, price at farm level and promotion of jute has been a major issue. Every cloud has its silver lining. At present the world’s 2nd largest jute fibre producing country is Bangladesh. The price of synthetic is increasing in the world market; with that the demand for jute goods is increasing gradually. Efficient management based on higher moral and ethical values can rejuvenate the industry. The hope is that, our lands and farmers are very much appropriate for the cultivation of Jute. So, there is still time to make ways for jute’s potential to flourish in Bangladesh.
Keywords: Jute, production, price, industry, British-India period, Pakistan period, Bangladesh period, future thrust
 A preliminary investigation on some over-wintering catfish: analysis of water quality, bacterial load and fish hematology
Mahabuba Shirin1, Tamanna Tabassum1, Drubo Mustofa Evan1, Kamrun Naher Azad1, Mousumi Akter2, Tanvir Rahman 1
1Department of Aquaculture, Bangladesh Agricultural University, Mymensingh-2202, BANGLADESH
2Department of Agricultural Chemistry, Bangladesh Agricultural University, Mymensingh-2202, BANGLADESH
Studies were conducted to determine the water quality parameters, bacterial load in water and hematology of Pangasianodon hypophthalmus, Heteropneoustes fossilis and Ompok pabda reared in 15 over-wintering catfish ponds located at different upazila under Mymensingh district. Participatory rural appraisal (PRA) technique tools such as personal interview, focus group discussion (FGD) and key informant interview with fish farmers were done to collect preliminary data. Fish and water samples were collected from catfish ponds and were analyzed in the Fish Disease Laboratory, Faculty of Fisheries, Bangladesh Agricultural University, Mymensingh, Bangladesh. The microbial loads of pond water (CFU/ mL) were determined by ten-fold serial dilution using Tryptone Soya Agar (TSA) after incubation at 25 °C for 48 h. Hematological analysis of blood samples were done to determine RBC, WBC, hemoglobin, blood glucose level and Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin (MCH) of the over-wintered catfish. It was found that the water temperature, pH, dissolve oxygen, total alkalinity and ammonia ranged from 27 to 20.5°C, 8.2 to 7.0, 7 to 5 ppm, 190 to 120 ppm, 0.03 ppm, respectively during the study period. Among the 15 ponds, the highest and lowest temperature was recorded in P. hypophthalmus ponds. The highest alkalinity was observed in P. hypophthalmus ponds and minimum was found in O. pabda ponds. The ammonia concentration was more or less similar (0.03 ppm) in 15 ponds. Average bacterial load of rearing water was ranged from the highest 2.6 ± 1.60 ×105 CFU/ mL to lowest 2.3 ± 1.93 ×103 CFU/ mL in H. fossilis ponds. The study revealed maximum RBC, WBC contents and the highest glucose level in O. pabda and minimum in H. fossilis and P. hypophthalmus. However, MCH and hemoglobin levels were found higher in P. hypophthalmus and lower in O. pabda. The study revealed preliminary data regarding over-wintering farm condition, bacterial loads of over-winter water, hematology and water quality parameters of three over-wintering catfish which also indicated the unplanned management of over-wintering ponds that sometimes affects water quality and hematology of catfish. The findings may contribute for the proper health management of fish reared under over-wintering condition.
Keywords: Water quality, bacterial load, hematology, over-wintering, catfish
 Rehabilitation of Banana Xanthomonas Wilt (Xanthomonas campestris pv. musacearum) affected mats using single stem rouging options
Kwach Johnson Kisera1, James Wanjohi Muthomi2, John Huria Nderitu2 3, Evelyn Nasambu Okoko4 , Peter Sungu Nyakomitta1, Olivier Ndayitegeye5
1Tom Mboya University Collage, Faculty of Biological and Physical Sciences, P.O. Box 199- 40300. Homa Bay, KENYA
2University of Nairobi, Department of Plant Science and Crop Protection, Box 30197, NAIROBI
3Mount Kenya University, P. O. Box 342-01000, Thika, KENYA
4Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization P.O. Box 523 40200, Kisii, KENYA
5Rwanda Agriculture and Animal Resources Development Board, Kigali, RWANDA
Banana Xanthomonas Wilt (BXW), caused by Xanthomonas campestris pv. musacearum (Xcm) is a devastating disease that can cause up to 100% loss of affected plants and affects all banana (Musa spp.) varieties. The disease is widespread in East and Central Africa region. This study objective was to evaluate the performance of single stem rouging options for rehabilitation of severely affected banana orchards in East and Central Africa countries. Five single stem rouging options were implemented in banana orchard with about 80% BXW severity in Bumala, Busia County in Western Kenya. The options included removal by uprooting; of infected banana plants, cutting at the base, injecting with 20 ml of glyphosate herbicide at the soil base of a pseudostem and uprooting the whole stool and control comprised of leaving the affected stools untouched. Initial visual assesment before implementation of the treatments of the field was over 80% infection by the symptomatic affected plants i.e. wilting and/or drying of male buds, premature ripening of bunches, yellowing of leaves, vascular discoloration and production of yellow ooze on cut vascular tissues. In addition further samples were collected for diagnosis of ten plants per treatment from different plant parts; leaf, pseudostem, corm, and rachis/fruit and were were subjected to ELISA and (PCR) to confirm the presence of Xcm pathogen. The rouging options were consistently implemented over one year period. During and after experimentation periodic on visual assesment of BXW incidence and severity revealed reduction to negligible levels also further diagnosis proceedures of PCR were done to confirm the presence or abence of the pathogen on the banana plants. Rouging the affected banana stems by cutting at the base, uprooting and injection of herbicide at the soil base of a pseudostem reduced BXW within six months. Xcm, an inhibiting bacteria cannot surve long in the presence of the host and by killing the banana pseudostem/or its tussues the pathogen dies hence no nutrients for survival after a duration of at least ninety days. Yields of 16.3 t ha-1, 9.4 t ha-1, 8.3 t ha-1 and 4.2 t ha-1 were recovered from the rehabilitated treatments of the affected stools, by application of glyphosate herbicide to the infected plants, cutting at the base all the infected plants respectively. Controls yielded 2.4 t ha-1 within one year of rehabilitation. Banana orchard highly infected with BXW were effectively rehabilitated and normal yields recovered within one year by consistently rouging the infected plant. Though efficient, rouging by use of herbicide is costly and requires technical knowledge while uprooting is labour intensive.
Keywords: Replanting, Glyphosate, Removing, Musa spp, Bacterial Wilt
 Management of Brinjal Shoot and Fruit Borer, Leucinodes orbonalis Guenee Using Biorational Insecticide based IPM Packages
Mithun Sarker, Mohammad Mahir Uddin, Mohammad Tofazzal Hossain Howlader
1Department of Entomology, Bangladesh Agricultural University, Mymensingh-2202, BANGLADESH
Brinjal shoot and fruit borer (BSFB) is a serious pest of brinjal which can cause up to 90% yield loss and very difficult to control. An experiment was conducted in the Entomology Field Laboratory, Bangladesh Agricultural University during December 2017 to April 2018 on the management of brinjal shoot and fruit borer using selected biorational insecticide based IPM Packages viz. spinosad + removal of infested shoot and fruit, abamectin + removal of infested shoot and fruit, emamectin benzoate + removal of infested shoot and fruit, cypermethrin + removal of infested shoot and fruit, spinosad + abamectin, spinosad + emamectin benzoate, spinosad + buprofezin, abamectin + buprofezin, emamectin benzoate + buprofezin, abamectin + emamectin benzoate along with an untreated control. The experiment was laid out in Randomized Complete Block Design with three replications. The effectiveness of IPM packages was evaluated based on following parameters viz. percent shoot and fruit infestation, percent protection of shoot and fruit over control, marketable and infested fruit yield (t/ha), percent increase or decrease of marketable or infested fruit over control. All the IPM packages significantly reduced percent shoot and fruit infestation and significantly increased/decreased the marketable/infested fruit yield, respectively over untreated control at 7 days after spraying (DAS). Among the packages the best results were found in case of spinosad + removal of infested shoot and fruit (73.13% and 72.72% shoot and fruit protection, respectively over control; marketable fruit yield of 5.70 t/ha and 65.07% reduction of infested fruit yield) and emamectin benzoate + buprofezin (82.72% and 57.70% shoot and fruit protection, respectively over control; marketable fruit yield of 5.71 t/ha and 43.88% reduction of infested fruit yield) treated plots whereas the lowest protection was obtained from abamectin + buprofezin (15.67% and 20.70% shoot and fruit protection, respectively over control; marketable fruit yield of 2.87 t/ha and 13.43% reduction of infested fruit yield). Therefore, spinosad + removal of infested shoot and fruit and emamectin benzoate + buprofezin could be recommended as the IPM programme for the sustainable management of BSFB.
Keywords: Solanum melongena, spinosad, abamectin, emamectin, buprofezin, removal, sustainable
 Identification of resistant wheat genotypes against spot blotch (Bipolaris sorokininana) for different sowing time and assessing their seed infection after harvest at Rampur, Chitwan, Nepal
Narayan Dhakal1, Sundar Man Shrestha1, Hira Kaji Manandhar1, Laxman Aryal1, Sagar G C2, Khem Raj Pant2
1Nepal Polytechnique Institute, Bharatpur, Chitwan, NEPAL
2Nepal Agricultural Research Council, National Wheat Research Program, Bhairahawa, Rupendehi, NEPAL
Spot blotch of wheat caused by Bipolaris sorokiniana is a problematic biotic constraint that causes 15-80% yield abatement in the Indian subcontinent and other parts of the world. The most effective means of managing crop diseases is to develop resistant varieties against crop diseases. 25 wheat genotypes were evaluated against spot blotch (Bipolaris sorokiniana) under natural epiphytotic conditions sown on two dates (26 November and 18 December) at Rampur, Chitwan from November 2015 to April 2016. The experiment was laid out in a split plot design with three replications where dates of sowing were taken as the main plot and wheat genotypes were taken as sub-plots. Genotypes RR-21 and Morocco were taken as a susceptible check. Disease scoring for both sowing date was done 3 times at an interval of seven days. Disease severity and Area Under Disease Progressive Curve (AUDPC) were calculated. Among the tested genotypes, disease severity and AUDPC values varied significantly for both the normal and late sowing dates. The six genotypes were found resistant and eight genotypes were found moderately resistant under normal sowing conditions. None of the genotypes were found to be resistant and moderately resistant under late sowing conditions. This indicates that timely sowing of wheat is important for reducing yield loss caused by spot blotch disease irrespective of wheat genotypes grown. Seed infection percent for normal sowing was lower (25 to 85 percent) than late sowing (31 to 91 percent). This concluded that if farmers have to use the seed for sowing from their own field they should use the seeds harvested from the normal sowing date. The genotypes BL-4350, BL-4463, NL-1094, Aditya, BL-4316 and NL-971 were found resistant to spot blotch under normal sown condition. These genotypes could be used as donor parents for spot blotch resistance in breeding program or could be released as a variety after evaluating the agronomical traits and quality parameters.
Keywords: Sowing time, AUDPC, spot blotch, seed infection, wheat
 Evaluation of CROPWAT 8.0 model in predicting the yield of east Africa highland banana under different sets of irrigation scheduling
Olivier Ndayitegeye1,3, Japheth Ogalo Onyando1, Romulus Okoth Okwany1and Johnson Kisera Kwach2
1Department of Agricultural Engineering, Egerton University, KENYA
2School of Agriculture and Food Security, Tom Mboya University College, KENYA
3Rwanda Agriculture and Animal Resources Development Board, Kigali, RWANDA
Simulation models based on plant physiology are used to predict growth and yield of crops. Such models are important because they can be used to pre-evaluate treatments, thus, improving the effectivity of agricultural research and reducing the cost of field experiments. For efficiency purpose, crop models need to be calibrated and validated before using them. The objective of this study was to evaluate the performance of an existing crop model in predicting the yield of East Africa Highland Banana (EAHB) under deficit irrigation and different irrigation intervals. The model, CROPWAT 8.0, was calibrated, evaluated and applied for banana crop water requirements and estimation of EAHB yield. For calibration of CROPWAT 8.0, monthly climatic data (temperature, relative humidity, wind speed, sunshine hours and rainfall), crop and soil data are were used. Climatic data were provided by the New_LocClim software which is the local climate estimator of FAO, effective rain was set to zero because the experiment was conducted under a rain shelter. Three irrigation levels (IL) (80%, 90% and 100% of Evapotranspiration) were combined with three levels of irrigation intervals (D) (4, 6 and 8 days in a randomized complete block design (RCBD) with three replications. To evaluate the model for yield estimation, the observed yield was compared with the corresponding simulated values by CROPWAT 8.0 using mean squared deviation (MSD), Nash and Sutcliffe model efficiency (NSE), coefficient of determination (R2) and paired t-test. The predicted banana yield (39.1 ± 2.66 t ha-1) from the calibrated model was very close to the observed yield (38.4 ± 2.37 t ha-1 (p≥0.05, R2 = 0.82 and an NSE of 0.81. MSD analysis showed that the model’s prediction was more accurate at 8 or 6 days irrigation intervals than 4 days irrigation interval. The calibrated CROPWAT 8.0 model can be used efficiently to predict the yield of East Africa Highland Banana.
Keywords: CROPWAT 8.0, banana yield, deficit irrigation, irrigation interval
 Evaluation of knowledge, attitude and practice (KAP) of farmers regarding organic farming
Md Shijan Islam, Md Matiul Islam
Agrotechnology Discipline, Khulna University, Khulna-9208, BANGLADESH
Organic agricultural products are gaining popularity among the consumers day by day. Farmers are also becoming interested in producing organic agricultural commodities. The production strategy of organic food commodities is environment friendly and of high economic potential. However, the knowledge, attitude and practice (KAP) of farmers regarding organic farming is merely assessed. The main purpose of the study was to evaluate the knowledge, attitude and practice of the farmers regarding organic farming. Data were collected from randomly selected 70 farmers from selected three villages named Ghola, Zoykhali and Shailmary of Jalma union of Batiaghata upazila under Khulna district of Bangladesh, through personal interview using an interview schedule. The eleven characteristics of the farmers which had been selected for the study were age, educational qualification, farming experience, organic farming experience, family size, farm size, monthly family income, organizational participation, cosmopolitanism, extension media contact and training on organic farming. The focus variables were the knowledge, attitude and practice of the farmers on organic farming. The respondents were asked to provide responses regarding the focus issues, and the given responses were recorded against the standard scale, and obtained scores were statistically analyzed for further interpretation. Majority (70%) of the respondents had medium knowledge, most (95.7%) of them had highly favorable attitude while their (51.4%) practice on organic farming was low. Among the ten practices, “application of cow dung in the field” was the highest practiced activity, while the least practiced activity was “regular soil test”. Among the selected eleven characteristics of the respondents, experience in organic farming (R²=0.145) (p<0.05), cosmopolitanism (R²=0.357) (p<0.01), extension media contact (R²=0.265) (p<0.01) and training on organic farming (R²=0.107) (p<0.05) showed significant positive relationship with knowledge; while experience in farming (R²=0.135) (p<0.05) and experience in organic farming (R²=0.059) (p<0.01) showed significant positive relationship with their attitude towards organic farming; and cosmopolitanism (R²=0.149) showed significant (p<0.01) positive relationship with practice of the farmers. By utilizing the highly favorable attitude of the farmers towards organic farming, the knowledge level of them could be increased through training and extension contact, and as a result the magnitude of practices could be increased in the long run. Necessary agricultural policy strategies should be formulated to enhance the organic farming activities by the farmers.
Keywords: Attitude, Farmer, Knowledge, Practice, Organic farming
 Performance of UC Davis chimney dryer: time savings and retention nutritional quality of carrot (Daucus carota) and brinjal (Solanum melongena)
Shamsudduha Pias1, M Tariqul Islam2, M Abdur Rahim1, Alamin Sheikh1, M Ashraful Islam1
1Department of Horticulture, Bangladesh Agricultural University, Mymensingh 2202, BANGLADESH
2Department of Agroforestry, Bangladesh Agricultural University, Mymensingh 2202, BANGLADESH
UC Davis (University of California, Davis) chimney dryer is a low cost technology and has been developed by the expert of UC Davis, USA to dry food products targeting to ensure the nutritional security. Experiments were conducted following completely randomized design with three replications. Slice thickness of carrot (experiment 1) was 1.5 cm with and without skin while thickness of brinjal (experiment 2) was 1 and 2 cm. Overall, less time required to dry both carrot and brinjal under UC Davis chimney dryer compared to sun dryer condition. Carrot drying time was 82 hours under UC Davis chimney dryer whereas 122 hours required to dry under open sun drying condition; so UC Davis saved 34 % time to dry carrot compared to open sun dry condition. Similarly, 21 to 25% time has been saved for brinjal drying under UC Davis chimney dryer compared to open sun dryer condition. No significant difference of protein, phosphorus and potassium contents of carrot and brinjal found from both systems of dryer indicating the no deterioration of mineral contents due to high temperature in UC Davis chimney dryer. Moisture and dry matter contents were also significantly different from each other. Overall, acceptance of physical appearance of both carrot (without skin) and brinjal (1 cm sliced thickness) was selected as the best under UC Davis chimney dried product compared open sun dried product, considering shape, size and colour of the dried products. UC Davis chimney dryer can efficiently reduce the duration of drying of vegetables and also avoid noise from birds and dusts compared to open sun dryer condition; and products can be stored for long time, thus ultimately provide nutritional security round the year for the rural people.
Keywords: Brinjal, carrot, nutritional security, UC Davis chimney dryer