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Published in Scientific Papers. Series B, Horticulture, Vol. LXIV, Issue 2
Written by Adelina HARIZANOVA, Lyubka KOLEVA-VALKOVA, Atanaska STOEVA, Atanas SEVOV

The aim of the study was to examine the effect of Silicon in the form of stabilized orthosilicic acid (H4SiO4) on the population of the two-spotted spider mite Tetranychus urticae Koch. on zucchini (Cucurbita pepo L.) cv. Izobilna and on the physiology of the infested plants. The experiment was conducted in a laboratory under controlled conditions at the Department of Entomology, Agricultural University - Plovdiv, Bulgaria. The plants were grown hydroponically and separated into four variants consisting of 1 - control, 2 - mite-infested plants, 3 - Silicon-treated plants and 4 - miteinfested plants, treated with Silicon. The results obtained suggest that Si could be successfully used for reducing the population density of the two-spotted spider mite on zucchini cv. Izobilna and to improve the physiological status of the plants. Several biochemical parameters concerning the main physiological processes in the infested plants were also measured. The results showed a decrease in the population density of T. urticae on the Si-treated leaves. The net photosynthetic rate and the content of the main photosynthetic pigments increased in the Si-supplied infested plants compared to the Si-unsupplied.

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