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Control of Powdery and Downy Mildews of Cucumber by Using Cooking Oils and Yolk Mixture
Plant Pathol. J. 2009;25:280-285
Published online September 30, 2009
© 2009 The Korean Society of Plant Pathology.

Hyeong Jin Jee, Chang Ki Shim, Kyung Yul Ryu, Jong Ho Park, Byung Mo Lee, Du Hoe Choi, Gab Hee Ryu
This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the CreativeCommons Attribution License ( which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium,provided the original work is properly cited.
Powdery and downy mildews caused by Sphaerotheca fusca and Pseudoperonospora cubensis are the most common and serious diseases of cucumber worldwide. In spite of the introduction of highly effective systemic fungicides, control of these diseases remains elusive. Hence, this study aimed to develop an alternative method to chemicals in controlling the diseases by using different types of cooking oil. Egg yolk, which contains a natural emulsifier, lecithin, was selected as a surfactant to emulsify the oils. Among the different cooking oils used, soybean, canola (rape seed), safflower, sunflower, olive, and corn oils showed over 95% control values against powdery mildew of cucumber in a greenhouse test. In particular, 0.3% canola oil emulsified with 0.08% yolk (1 yolk and 60 ml canola in 20 l spray) was found to be the most effective. The treatment resulted in 98.9% and 96.3% control efficacies on powdery and downy mildews, respectively, of cucumber in the field. Canola oil exhibited direct and systemic effect, wherein powdery mildew of cucumber was suppressed only on treated leaves but not on non-treated leaves in a plant, while mycelia and conidia of the pathogen were severely distorted or destroyed by the treatment. The prospect of using the canola oil and yolk mixture as a natural fungicide is highly promising because of its effectiveness, availability, low cost, simple preparation, and safety to humans and the environment. The use of the canola oil and yolk mixture is expected to be an effective fungicide for use in organic farming and home gardening.
Keywords : cooking oil, cucumber, downy mildew, egg yolk, powdery mildew

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