Dr. Koshy Abraham
Professor and Head
Department of Plant Pathology was established as a statutory department of the College of Horticulture in 1972. Initially UG courses were offered. M.Sc(Ag) and Ph.D programmes in Plant Pathology were started in1976 and 1983 respectively. In 1993, a Mushroom production unit and in 2003 an Agricultural Microbiology unit were started. A Centre for plant disease identification and documentation was established in 2005.
Teaching, Research and Extension in the field of Plant Pathology.
Dr. Koshy Abraham - Professor & Head
Dr. M. V. Rajendran Pillai - Professor
Dr. T. Sheela Paul - Professor
Dr. S. Beena - Associate Professor
Courses offered : B.Sc(Ag) M.Sc( Ag) Ph. D
Core courses : 6 6 4
Optional courses : 3 20 3
Department possesses well equipped UG, PG and research laboratories to cater to the needs of the students. So far 55 M. Sc( Ag) and 10 Ph. D students have secured their degree. At present, 4 M.Sc( Ag) and 2 Ph. D students are on the rolls.
The department undertakes research programmes on diseases and their management in spices, plantation crops, vegetables, rice, fruits, medicinal plants and beverage crops which led to the development of viable disease management strategies. The role of biofertilizers, biocontrol agents in improving plant growth and on disease management aspects are also being investigated. Now more attention is being given to develop ecofriendly management of bacterial wilt of ginger and vegetables, Phytophthora rot of black pepper, cocoa and vanilla. Research on mushroom production, pest and disease management are also being undertaken. The department has following research projects funded by external agencies as well as the university.
1. Effect of prophylactic control measures of quick wilt (Foot rot) disease on control of fungal pollu
(Anthracnose) of pepper.
2. Studies on fungal pollu etiology (Anthracnose disease of pepper) and nature and extent of
3. Project under Coconut Root (Wilt) Disease
(a) Status and influence of Rhizosphere microflora of coconut palms in healthy and diseased
tracts and the possible role of microbial toxins produced outside the plant in relation to
root (wilt) index.
(b) Control of leaf rot disease by using newer fungicides.
(c) Mycoplasma as possible causal agent of the root (wilt) disease.
(i) Diagnostic cum staining technique for routine detection of mollicutes.
(ii) In vitro characterization of mollicute(s) associated with rot (wilt) affected coconut palms.
(d) Observational trial for control of leaf root disease of coconut by using systemic fungicides.
(e) Interaction of the borrowing nematode Radopholus similis with fungi in the expression of root
( wilt) disease of coconut palms.
(f) Studies on symptomatology, etiology and control of quick yellow decline of coconut.
4. Studies on the symptomatology of Kokkan disease of Banana (KAU Project)
5. Studies on Kokkan disease of Banana (KAU Project)
6. Evaluation of cassava varieties lines/types resistant to cassava mosaic virus.
7. Use of biocontrol for checking Phytophthora disease in black pepper (TMBP-VIII)
8. Incorporation of biocontrol in nursery plants for checking phytophthora disease in pepper nursery
9. Biocontrol of Ralstonia solanaceram E.F. Smith causing bacterial wilt in solanaceum vegetable
crops (ICAR Ad-hoc Scheme).
1. Development of plant growth promoting microorganisms consortium technology for ex vitro
establishment of micro propagated vanilla (Vanilla planifolia Andr.) and ginger (Zingiber officinale
Rose.) (KSCSTE Scheme).
2. Development of bioagents consortium for plant disease management and commercial
applications (DBT Scheme).
3. Biocontrol consortium for the management of bacterial wilt of chilli and Phytophthora rot of black
pepper and vanilla (KSCSTE Scheme).
4. Centre for Plant Disease Identification and Documentation (KAU Plan Scheme)
5. ICAR Seed Project on Mushroom Spawn Production.
6. Establishment of Agricultural Microbiology unit. (Plan Scheme)
i Characterization of phosphate solubilizing bacteria and Azospirillum from rhizosphere of
cucurbitaceous vegetables in Kerala (funded by KAU).
ii. Isolation and screening of different AMF cultures for selected cucurbitaceous crops (funded
Teachers are acting as resource person in various summer institutes, training programmes, farmers seminars and also in radio talks. They serve as experts in diagnostic team constituted by KAU and Govt. of Kerala. They involve in consultancy services to farming community by suggesting suitable remedial measures to the plant disease problems. Training programmes on mushroom cultivation to unemployed rural women and personals from private institutions are being organized. Training programmes on biofertilizers and microbiological techniques are also being organized. The mushroom production unit is involved in the production and distribution of spawns of Oyster, milky mushroom and Pleurotus sp.
Current month extension activities
1. Farm advisory services - 58 No's
2. Resource person of training programmes - 2 No's
3. Visitors to the department - 2 batches.
Viable disease management practices for foot rot of black pepper, rhizome rot and bacterial wilt of ginger, various vegetable diseases, bacterial wilt of solanaceous vegetables, Phytophthora pod rot and seedling blight of cocoa are evolved.
First occurance of more than 25 new diseases of various crop plants are recorded, Effectiveness of soil solarisation in controlling soil borne diseases of black pepper and vegetables were established. Effective antagonists against major soil borne pathogens of Kerala are identified.
A suitable plant growth promoting micro organisms consortia have been identified for the growth and establishment of micro propagated vanilla and ginger. Consortial effect of bioagents against Phytophthora spp , Pythium sp and Ralstonia solanacearum are established.
Cheap technologies for the mass multiplication of Trichoderma sp, Pseudomonas flurescence and mushroom spawn production have been standardized.
Techniques for increasing the shelf life of Trichoderma sp, Pseudomonas flurescence have been standardized.
Cheap technology for large scale production of Trichoderma sp using solid substrates(dried coconut leaf fronds + neem cake @ 9:1)
Consortial formulations for the management of major soil borne pathogens have been developed.
Total Years of service : 29
Area of specialization : Plant virology, Vegetable pathology, Biocontrol of plant diseases
No. of students guided : M. Sc- 8 & Ph.D – 1
Total Publications : 109
Total Years of service : 30
Area of specialization : Agricultural Microbiology
No. of students guided : M. Sc- 5 & Ph.D – 1
Total Years of service : 26
Area of specialization : Rice pathology, Biocontrol of plant diseases.
No. of students guided : M. Sc- 2 & Ph.D – 1
Total Publications : 38
Total Years of service : 26
Area of specialization : Plant Bacteriology, Mushroom production
No. of students guided : M. Sc- 4
Total Publications : 35
Total Years of service : 25
Area of specialization : Mycology
No. of students guided : M. Sc- 5
Total Publications : 33
Total Years of service : 12
Area of specialization : Soil Microbiology and Biofertilizers
No. of students guided : M. Sc- 4
Total Publications : 34
Professor & Head
Department of Plant Pathology
College of Horticulture
KAU (PO), Vellanikkara, 680656.
Telephone No : 0487- 2370822 (extn 322)
Fax No : 91-487-2370019
Email ID : email@example.com
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