Diseases and insect pests management
Late blight (Phytopthora infestans) and early blight (Alternaria solani) are most common field disease of potato. To control these diseases Blitox (0.2-0.3%) or Dithane Z-78 (0.2%) or Ridomil MZ @ 0.2%, Matco (Metalaxye + Mancozeb) @ 0.2% or Moxlinate (Cymoxanil + Mancozeb) @ 0.2% are effective. Use of resistant varieties, removal of infected foliage, restricted irrigation, proper sanitation is other means to combat these diseases. Charcol rot (Macrophomina phaseoli) is a serious storage rot. The disease, being both seed- and soil-borne, is difficult to be eliminated. Selection of disease-free tubers, long crop rotation and resistant varieties may be used. Black scurf (Rhizoctonia solani) is also a major disease causing damage in field and storage. Soil treatment with PCNB @ 70 kg/ha may minimize the disease. Potato tubers should be treated with boric acid @ 3% or penicuran @ 0.15% solution for black scurf control. Apart from fungal pathogens, bacteria and viruses also affect potato crop. Strepto cycline@ 200 ppm for bacterial disease control and Metasystoks @ 0.2% or Dlinethoale @ 0.2% spry for the control of insect vectors of virol disease. Cultivation of disease resistant varieties is therefore, recommended.
Among insect pests, aphids, cut worms and beetles are of economic importance. Commonly used systemic and contact insecticides are recommended to control these insect pests.