Integration of natural seed treatments in organic and open-pollinated corn systems

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2008-01-01
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Delate, Kathleen
Pollak, Linda
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Goggi, A. Susana
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Lamkey, Kendall
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Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture
The Leopold Center is a research and education center on the campus of Iowa State University created to identify and reduce negative environmental and social impacts of farming and develop new ways to farm profitably while conserving natural resources.
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Essential oils from the aromatic plants, such as thyme, oregano, cinnamon, clove, and savory, were used to effectively control several common seed and soil pathogens in the laboratory, and could be used as seed treatments in corn. Results from field experiments showed some oils protected the seeds from pathogens but not others. Before these natural products can be widely adopted, however, issues of volatility of the oils at ambient temperature and appropriate application rate must be addressed.

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