Beneficial bacteria for the control of Botrytis cinerea in greenhouse crops
In the commercial greenhouse industry, the heavy reliance on chemical pesticides for ornamental plant production raises growing concerns regarding environmental contamination and safety. With increased interest in sustainable and safer alternatives, there is a demand for effective pest control methods that reduce chemical usage. Biopesticides, derived from natural materials and beneficial microbes, provide a viable solution to replace synthetic chemicals, promoting environmentally friendly and safe practices in greenhouse cultivation.
Beneficial bacteria, specifically strains from various genera, have been found to colonize plant roots and offer numerous advantages to plants. These bacteria stimulate plant growth and act as biocontrol agents, eliciting induced systemic resistance (ISR) effective against both foliar and root pathogens and insect herbivores. Their biocontrol mechanism may involve the production of antibiotics, fungal cell wall lysing enzymes, or competition with pathogenic microorganisms. Of particular interest are Pseudomonas species, widely studied for their ability to promote growth, directly suppress pathogens, and produce antibiotics like 2,4-DAPG, which effectively control root and seedling diseases caused by pathogenic fungi.