Scientists investigating the genetics of chilli pepper species have discovered a whole host of new chilli hybrids that can be grown by crossing domesticated peppers with their wild cousins. This will allow plant breeders to create new varieties that have better disease resistance and could increase productivity.
A balanced nutritional diet rich in minerals, antioxidants, and vitamins is of vital importance for human health. Fruits and vegetables are rich sources for most of these dietary phytochemicals and micronutrients. However, today’s most common diets consist mainly of starchy staples and less of nutrient-rich foods or fruits and vegetables, particularly in the developing world. Keeping in view that the UN General Assembly designated the year 2021 as the International Year of Fruits and Vegetables.
Researchers have demonstrated that unique fungi strengthen the “immune systems” of wheat and bean plants against aphids. Fungi enter and influence the amount of a plant’s own defences, resulting in fewer aphids. Results could serve to reduce agricultural insecticide usen.
In the strawberry nursery industry, a nursery’s reputation relies on their ability to produce disease- and insect-free plants. The best way to produce clean plants is to start with clean planting stock. Many nurseries struggle with angular leaf spot of strawberry, a serious disease that can result in severe losses either by directly damaging the plant or indirectly through a violation of quarantine standards within the industry.
With their expertise in microbiome research, researchers were able to demonstrate how a specific bacterium inside the seeds of rice plants effectively and in an eco-friendly way inhibits destructive plant pathogens.
New research shows that since modern crop varieties were introduced in the developing world starting in 1961, they have substantially reduced infant mortality, especially for male babies and among poor households.
Scientists are getting closer to finding the genes for maleness in waterhemp and Palmer amaranth, two of the most troublesome agricultural weeds in the U.S. Finding the genes could enable new “genetic control” methods for the weeds, which, in many places, no longer respond to herbicides.
Researchers found wild relatives of sorghum in higher concentrations in Australia than anywhere else; the plants have potential to combat drought and extreme heat, but they need urgent safeguarding.
Securing food supplies around the globe is a major challenge facing humanity, especially in light of the predicted increase in the world’s population to almost ten billion people by 2050 and the effects of climate change. Greater crop diversity in agriculture is seen as a stabilising factor for food security. Yet crop diversity alone is not sufficient.
Sudden death syndrome (SDS) is a devastating disease that afflicts soybean crops, causing annual losses in U.S. soybean yields in excess of $274 million dollars. New research shows that the trick to surviving the disease might be a matter of timing when to mount a defense response.