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Wednesday March 25, 2020


12:00-5:00 pm           Field trip includes box lunch and bus tour of Santa Maria fruit and vegetable production. Tickets available via Eventbrite.  Limit of 50 people on field trip.  More details will be coming, pictures below show some of the potential sites.


6:00-8:00 pm              Social and dinner at 1865 Craft House & Kitchen, located at 1865 Monterey St, San Luis Obispo, 93401


Thursday March 26, 2020 at the Performing Arts Center, Philips Hall


8:00-8:30 am             Registration


8:30-10:00 am           Welcome: Andrew Thulin, Dean of the College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences, and Timothy Paulitz, organizer


Opening Session: Career Retrospectives of Soilborne Pathogens (40-minute talks below)


Thomas Gordon, UC Davis. Fusarium oxysporum: Where it comes from and what it does.


Becky Westerdahl, UC Davis. From Temik to transgenic: A nematological odyssey.


10:00-10:30 am         Coffee break


10:30-noon                 Session I. Fusarium and Pythium Diseases

Session Chair: Peter Henry, USDA-ARS, Salinas. (15-minute talks below)


Towards understanding Fusarium falciforme populations, is it an emergent pathogen in California? Johanna Del Castillo, UC Davis.


Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. mori, a wild one. Ana Pastrana, UC Davis.


Pythium spp. infecting winter field and cover crops in North Carolina. Ella Reeves, NC State University.


Efficacy of biofungicides in management of Pythium species causing carrot cavity spot. Emma Gachomo, UC Riverside.


Leveraging comparative genomics via the Prescriptive Biologics Knowledgebase (PBK) to develop Methylobacterium spp. seed treatments to suppress Pythium spp. and Fusarium virguliforme in soy. Allison Jack, NewLeaf Symbiotics.


Does deficit irrigation influence soilborne diseases of processing tomato? Justine Beaulieu, UC Davis.


Noon-1:15 pm           Lunch at Mott Lawn (across from the Performing Arts Center)


1:15-3:00 pm              Session II. Soilborne Microbial Dynamics

Session Chair: JP Dundore-Arias, CSU Monterey Bay. (15-minute talks below)


Root microbes associated with the rate of decline of HLB infected citrus trees. James Borneman, University of California Riverside.


Take-all suppressive and conducive communities in wheat rhizospheres. Melissa LeTourneau, USDA-ARS Pullman.


Soil fumigation and nitrogen applications influence potato yields, diseases and soil microbiomes. JP Dundore-Arias, CSU Monterey Bay.


How does soil health management impact survival of soilborne plant pathogens? Kelley Paugh, N. Tautges, K. Scow, C. Swett , UC Davis.


Combined effects of inundative biocontrol and anaerobic soil disinfestation (ASD) using non-host cover crops as carbon sources for clubroot management in cruciferous crops. Ram Khadka, Ohio State University.


Anaerobic soil disinfestation – a sustainable alternative for the management of soilborne pathogens. Andres Sanabria-Velazquez, NC State University.


Can cover cropping manage nematode infestations in almond orchards? Yu-Chen Wang Dept. Nematology, UC Riverside.


3:00-3:30 pm             Coffee break


3:30-5:15 pm             Session III. Chemical, Biological, and cultural control of soilborne diseases.

 Session Chair: Kelly Ivors, Driscoll’s Global Plant Health.

(15-minute talks below)


Management of soilborne pests in strawberry fruit and nursery fields using steam for soil disinfestation. Steven Fennimore, UC Davis.


Seed-delivered disease mitigation against root-knot nematodes in fresh market carrots. Ole Becker, J. de Oliveira Silva, A. Loffredo, L. Lüders, A. Ploeg, and J. Smith Becker, UC Riverside.


Grafting of bell pepper to manage root-knot nematodes. Francisco Franco-Navarro, UC Riverside.


Response of susceptible and resistant sweetpotato and tomato to Meloidogyne floridensis from California. Antoon Ploeg, UC Riverside.


Exploring the mode of action of anaerobic digestates on the suppression of plant-parasitic nematodes. Caroline Eberlein, UC Riverside.


The effects of vermicompost applications on densities of aphids and growth characteristics in romaine lettuce. Renee Murphy, Cal Poly Pomona.


Role of phytochemical activities in the prevention of soilborne pathogens. Nadir Sidiqi, BioNatural Healing College.


5:30-7:30 pm             Meeting  of the California Nematology Workgroup

OR Farmer’s Market in downtown San Luis Obispo



Friday March 27, 2020


7:30-8:00 am              Steering Committee Meeting- Performing Arts Center, Philips Hall


8:30-8:45 am              Is there a balance between the business of agriculture and the sustainable management of soilborne plant pathogens? Dan Chellemi, Agricultural Solutions.


8:45-10:00 am           Session IV. Soilborne Strawberry Diseases. Shashika Hewavitharana, Cal Poly- San Luis Obispo.

(15-minute talks below)


Management of soilborne diseases in California without methyl bromide. Gerald Holmes, Cal Poly- San Luis Obispo.


Are substrate-mediated microbial community shifts the future of soilborne disease management? Krishna Subbarao, UC Davis.


Infection process of Macrophomina phaseolina and influence of water stress on disease                                development on strawberry. Lindsey Pedroncelli, UC Riverside.


Characterizing pathogen diversity is essential to developing host resistance: a case study of Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. fragariae. Peter Henry, USDA-ARS Salinas.


Site specific disease management. Frank Martin, USDA-ARS Salinas.


10:00-10:30 am         Coffee break


10:30-11:3 am           Session V. Soilborne Strawberry Diseases Continued… Gerald Holmes, Cal Poly- San Luis Obispo.


(15-minute talks below)

Current status of grafting to manage soilborne pathogens in USA field production systems. Frank Louws, NC State University.


Resistance to Macrophomina crown rot and Verticillium wilt in strawberry cultivars and elite lines. Seyedmojtaba Mansouripour, Cal Poly- San Luis Obispo.


Advancements and limitations in quantifying Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. fragariae in soil. Mike Matson, USDA-ARS Salinas.


(5-minute talks below)

Site-specific management of soilborne pathogens in California strawberry production. Alexander Putman, UC Riverside.


Transcending substitution-based alternatives to methyl bromide. Peter Henry, USDA-ARS Salinas.


Temporal changes in soil microbiome in response to soil fumigation. Shashika Hewavitharana, Cal Poly- San Luis Obispo.


Colonization of Macrophomina phaseolina and Verticillium dahliae in selected strawberry genotypes. Omar Gonzalez, Cal Poly- San Luis Obispo.



Eight Continuing Education hours were applied for through CDPR.

The Conference on Soilborne Plant Pathogens would like to thank our corporate sponsors for their support. Their contributions went to cover student scholarships, lunches, and food for the social.