Accelerated Microbial Degradation of Nematicides in Vineyard and Orchard Soils

  • H.J. Hugo ARC Infruitec-Nietvoorbij1, Private Bag X5026, 7599 Stellenbosch, South Africa
  • C. Mouton Nemconsult, PO Box 877, Upington 8800, South Africa
  • A.P. Malan Department of Conservation Ecology and Entomology, Faculty of AgriSciences, Stellenbosch University, Stellenbosch, South Africa


Accelerated microbial degradation (AMD) of organophosphate and carbamate nematicides is a
phenomenon whereby biodegradation in the soil is increased, leading to a dramatically shortened
persistence of nematicides. More intensified agriculture practices in South Africa in response to the future
demand for food may lead to increased pest and disease pressure, which in turn will lead to more frequent
pesticide application. The same principle applies to plant-parasitic nematode control practices, and the
overuse and misuse will have a pronounced effect on the enhancement of AMD. With limited management
options available, the responsible use of nematicides becomes more pertinent. Producers should be
aware of the problems associated with multiple soil applications of organophosphates and carbamates
against plant-parasitic nematodes. This article reviews factors contributing to the AMD of carbamate and
organophosphate nematicides in soil and makes practical recommendations to avoid the occurrence of
AMD in vineyard and orchards.


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