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IJSTR >> Volume 2- Issue 7, July 2013 Edition

International Journal of Scientific & Technology Research  
International Journal of Scientific & Technology Research

Website: http://www.ijstr.org

ISSN 2277-8616

Prevalence Of Mistletoe On Citrus Trees In The Abura-Asebu-Kwamankese District Of The Central Region Of Ghana

[Full Text]



Asare-Bediako, E., Addo-Quaye, A. A., Tetteh, J. P., Buah, J.N., Van Der Puije, G.C., Acheampong, R.A.



Index Terms: citrus, mistletoe infestation, yield loss, parasitic plant, alternate hosts



ABSTRACT:- Mistletoes, which are plant parasites in the families, Loranthaceae and Viscaceae, have been reported to cause severe damage to cocoa, citrus and many other fruit trees in Ghana. Participatory and field surveys were carried out to assess the prevalence of the parasite on selected orange orchards in the Abura-Asebu-Kwamankese district of the Central Region of Ghana, a major citrus producing area in Ghana. Both structured and unstructured questionnaires were administered to 40 citrus farmers in the district to find out farmers views about the prevalence and control of the parasite in the district. A field assessment of the incidence and severity of the mistletoe in 20 citrus orchards was also conducted. The results revealed high incidence and severe infestation of citrus by the mistletoe. This obligate parasite attacks citrus plants as early as three years after planting and causes severe damage to citrus trees by retarding growth, causing yield loss and mortality. All the respondent farmers control the parasite mechanically, with 95% of them pruning with machete and only 5% using standard pruner. It was observed that the citrus farmers do not effectively control the mistletoe as all the 20 orchards surveyed had incidences of the parasite with as many as 20 per citrus plant. Painful bites from Crematogaster ants, lack of standard pruner and regeneration of the parasite after pruning were identified as the major constraints to effective control of the parasite. Eighty percent of the farmers believe that the parasite is spread by birds whilst the remaining 30% think mistletoe is spread by contaminated pruning equipment. Nineteen alternative hosts were identified around the citrus orchards, which were believed to be the sources of inoculums for the spread of the parasite.



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