Plant Health

The Pacific’s fragile ecosystem is constantly at risk from invasive species, pests and diseases. It is therefore vital that sustainable and appropriate management practices are developed and utilized to ensure   sustained productive use of the land. Plant Health aims to promote these practices by utilizing its three main units, entomology, pathology and weeds in undertaking regular surveys of pests and diseases, providing information, creating awareness among farmers,  updating information databases and assisting in eradication activities. 

Fiji imports fungal pathogen
Wednesday, 03 March 2010 17:13
The pathogenic rust fungus Puccinia spegazzinii is now being held in SPC's quarantine laboratory in Suva. It is the first time that a fungal pathogen will be used for biological weed control in Fiji.

The rust was transported on live mikania plants handcarried from the UK by project technician Sarah Pene.

The mikania plants had been inoculated with P. spegazzinii a week prior to shipment.

Symptoms of the infection are now developing on the plants in the SPC laboratory, with the characteristic sori appearing on the leaf undersides and petioles.

Inoculations of fresh plant material will be carried out under secure quarantine conditions to maintain the culture in the laboratory until field releases are made.

Effective management can help maintain productivity of land resources,stregthen food security, safeguard the environment and increase revenue. Plant Health strives to improve awareness on environmental implications of agricultural practices and offering safer environmentally friendly options.