Turcicum leaf blight of maize incited by Exserohilum turcicum (Pass.) Leonard and Suggs is the major limiting factor of maize production in temperate agro-ecologies. Disease management through host plant resistance is the most effective strategy. In the present study among 26 maize genotypes which were initially screened for resistance against E. turcicum under field conditions, 8 genotypes viz., PS 39, CML 451, CML 470, CML 472, VL 1030, VL 1018140, VL1018527 and SMI178-1 were found resistant when screened against twelve isolates of E. turcicum under artificial epiphytotic conditions. Eight genotypes viz., PS45, CML165, CML459, VL1249, VL0536, SMC-5, SMC-3 and KDL 211 were found moderately resistant with disease grade ranged from 2.1-2.5. These maize genotypes possess resistance to turcicum leaf blight can be used successfully in developing high yielding early maturing varieties for high altitude temperate agro-ecologies. The fungus E. turcicum is highly variable in nature. Variability studies on pathogenicity were conducted on twelve isolates of E. turcicum on eleven putative differential maize lines. During the present study a wide pathogenic variation was observed among the twelve isolates of E. turcicum. Cluster analysis on the basis of similarity or dissimilarity in reaction types exhibited by the differential hosts, clustered the isolates into 6 pathogenic groups. The isolates belonged to higher altitudes (Kti 10, Kti11, Kti5) were found to be more aggressive as compared to the isolates of low altitude areas.
Exserohilum turcicum, Maize, TLB resistance, Variability
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