What Is It? Wednesday – Root Knot Nematodes on Okra

Root Knot Nematodes on Okra

Root Knot Nematodes on Okra
Justin Ballew, ©2023, Clemson Extension

The galling on these okra roots was caused by root-knot nematodes (RKN). We see nematodes build up in the soil when susceptible crops are planted in the same fields or beds year after year. Crop rotation is an important management strategy, but there is a catch. RKN have a very extensive host range, spanning numerous plant families, making it difficult to rotate to a crop that will not be affected. Good rotational partners that are not hosts of RKN include members of the grass family, such as sweet corn, and cover crops, such as sudangrass, millet, or small grains. Resistant varieties are available for certain vegetables also, so if you’ve had trouble with nematodes in the past, carefully read up on the varieties you use. For more information, see HGIC 2216, Root-Knot Nematodes In The Vegetable Garden.

If this document didn’t answer your questions, please contact HGIC at hgic@clemson.edu or 1-888-656-9988.

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