Role of medicinal plants as green pesticides against Alternaria blight

Surbhi Gupta and Nidhi Didwania
FET, MRIIRS, Department of Biotechnology, Faridabad, Haryana 121003, India

Abstract

Gupta, S. & Didwania, N. (2021). Role of medicinal plants as green pesticides against Alternaria blight. Bulg. J. Agric. Sci., 27 (3), 562–568

Medicinal plants have been playing significant role in management of several plant diseases. Numerous medicinal plants contain several components and pigments that show toxicity against various microbes including fungi that play role in spreading plant diseases.  Phytochemicals isolated from medicinal plants are key ingredients of green pesticides. Alternaria blight is one such prevalent plant disease caused by Alternaria species worldwide that causes damage to agricultural crops including vegetables, fruits and cereals. It is also a major concern for nutritious and economically important oil yielding crops of the world. Innumerable chemicals are applied to combat diseases caused by species of this devastating fungi. The frequent use of chemical fungicides results in various environmental problems which directly interfere with the sustainability factor. Therefore, current attention has been paid towards exploiting the extracts of medicinal and aromatic plant sp. for plant protection. The secondary metabolites secreted by medicinal plants used throughout the world are accountable for their biological characteristics. The microbial growth in varied situation is controlled by these plant derived products. Eucalyptus, moringa and neem products are now used commercially as green pesticide and also investigations are carried out to make use of essential oils of higher plants to test their efficacy against Alternaria sp. Azardirachitin a plant pigment isolated from seed kernel has major contribution in the development of several green pesticide formulations like Margosan-O, Bio-neem, Azatin, Neemies, Safer’s ENI, RD-Repelin, Neemguard, Nimbin etc used successfully worldwide.

Keywords: green pesticides; plant protection; medicinal plants; Alternaria blight

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