A functional decision support system for management of Graphiola leaf spot (Graphiola phoenicis) disease during hardening of date palm tissue cultured plants in a greenhouse
Keywords:Date palm, hardening of plants, Graphiola disease and decision support system
A functional decision support system (DSS) was developed through optimising values of parameters favour faster growth and development of tissue cultured plantlets of date palm and suppression of disease infection. The programming of control devices was further managed based on the ambient environmental conditions, which required variable simulation periods and a plan for controlling of all systems for maintaining the greenhouse environment. During the process of plant hardening, the plants were infected by Graphiola leaf spot (Graphiola phoenicis). The moderate temperature, and high humidity inside the greenhouse, accompanied by short days and frequent occurrence of fog during winter months, favoured the development of smut infection. It is required to manage an extended photoperiod for 16 hours with 15000 lux light intensity provided by white fluorescent tube lights and incandescent bulbs inside the greenhouse. The integrated practices of enhanced photoperiod and light intensity under the greenhouse in combination with fungicides application to plants were found very effective in suppressing the intensity of the disease and its adverse effects on the plants. Using this decision support system (DSS), the tissue cultured date palm plants cv. Barhee has been successfully hardened and managed disease and transplanted in the field for further studying establishment, survival, plant growth and fruiting-related parameters.
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