Hot pepper (Capsicum frutescens) dominates the world spice trade and is an important cash crop for small scale farmers in developing countries. However, its production and productivity remain low and this is attributed to lack of improved varieties, poor seed systems, insect pests, diseases and drought. Fruit flies and the False coddling moth (FCM) are quarantine pests and cause substantial losses in the hot pepper venture. Farmers in effort to protect their produce mostly rely on pesticides and this increases the likelihood of rejection of export produce at the international market. Pests can cost effectively be managed by exploiting host plant resistance. The study identified hot pepper genotypes with sources of resistance to fruit pests and morphological fruit traits associated with resistance to the pests. Genotypes CAP0408-12, UG2-WE0402-16, UG2-WE0511-22, UG2-WE0307-14 and UG-WE02-1014 showed resistance to both fruit pests. Fruit size (weight, width and length) significantly and positively correlated with pest infestation. The chemical basis of resistance of these resistant hot pepper genotypes should be determined in order to breed for resistant varieties.
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RUFORUM Working document series
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