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MEDICINAL AND AROMATIC CROPS AS HOSTS OF Helicoverpa armigera Hübner (LEPIDOPTERA: NOCTUIDAE)


 

Gireesh Nadda

 
CSIR-Institute of Himalayan Bioresource Technology, Post Box No. 6, Palampur, Kangra, HP 176 061, INDIA
E-mail:  girish@ihbt.res.in
IHBT Publication Number: 2330


Received: 08 March 2012 Accepted: 18 July 2013 Published: 31 October 2013

 
   
 
 

Helicoverpa armigera Hübner (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) is one of the most polyphagous, devastating and cosmopolitan pest species (Shelomi et al., 2010). Its larvae feed on a wide range of plants, including many important cultivated crops (Sharma, 2001; Nadda et al., 2012). It is a serious pest of cotton, maize, tobacco, tomato, pigeon pea and chickpea. In Russia and adjacent countries, it is reported to attack more than 120 plant species (AgroAtlas, 2012) and newer records are still increasing the number of host plants.

Present note will describe some of the medicinal and aromatic crops as new hosts of H. armigera. Regular surveys were conducted at Chandpur farm in fields and greenhouses of CSIR-Institute of Himalayan Bioresource Technology, Palampur (Latitude 76o33’29’’ East; Longitude 32o6’20’’North; Elevation 1356 amsl). H. armigera was observed on many medicinal and aromatic crops raised and cultivated in and outside the greenhouses (Plate 1). Its larvae were observed on Rosa damascena, R. bourboniana, Matricaria chamomilla, Salvia sclarea, S. officinalis, Borago officinalis, Silybum marianum, Plumbago zeylanica, Achillea millefolium, Asparagus officinalis, Foeniculum vulgare, Melissa officinalis, Nepeta cataria, Pelargonium graveolens, Stevia rebaudiana and Anacyclus pyrethrum in the fields (Table 1 and Plate 1). Amongst the different crops grown in the same greenhouse, H. armigera attacked Dracocephalum heterophyllum, Artemisia pallens and Salvia officinalis more prevalently, compared to Thymus serpyllum, Hypericum perforatum, Pelargonium graveolens, Rosmarinus officinalis and Stevia rebaudiana. As far as I am aware from literature all the plants except Salvia sclarea, Asparagus officinalis, Foeniculum vulgare, R. damascene and R. bourboniana are new host records for H. armigera (Table 1). Eggs and larvae from different crops were collected and reared under the controlled laboratory conditions (25±2 0C; 50±10% RH) for identification. Larvae were reared on the semi synthetic diet individually in the plastic vials of 20 ml capacity. Ingredients for the preparation of one unit diet included corn flour-84 g, yeast-25 g, casein-10 g, agar agar-11 g, ascorbic acid-5g, sorbic acid-1g, methyl-4-hydroxybenzoate-2g, streptomycine sulphate 0.2 g, formaldehyde-2-3 drops, multivitamin drops (ABDEC) 3-4 drops and distilled water 600 ml.

The severity of infestation by H. armigera in the scented rose field at Chandpur farm was assessed by trapping adults using funnel type sex pheromone traps (Pest Control (India) Private Limited, Division: Bio-control Research Laboratory, Bangalore, India). A total of 7,896 males were trapped in the month of April with an average of 46.45 males/trap/day (maximum 102.29 and minimum 15 adults/trap/day). Time of emergence of H. armigera adults after winter diapause coincided with bud formation of scented roses. Hence, rose crop is utilized as a host crop besides other medicinal and aromatic crops as described in the manuscript.

Figure1A

Figure1B

Figure 1 Helicoverpa armigera on: a. Dracocephalum heterophyllum b. Artemisia pallens c. Silybum marianum d. Matricaria chamomilla e. Salvia officinalis f. Salvia sclarea g. Rosa sp. h. Adults trapped in pheromone trap i. Stevia rebaudiana j. Foeniculum vulgare k. Asparagus officinalis l. Nepeta catariam. Borago officinalis n. Rosmarinus officinaliso. Hypericum perforatum p. Pelargonium graveolens

 

Table 1. Medicinal and aromatic crops as hosts of Helicoverpa armigera

S. No.

Crops

Family

Place of observation

Period of observations

Parts damaged

Botanical name

Common Name

1. 

Rosmarinus officinalis L.

Rosemary

Lamiaceae

Greenhouse & Field

April, July

leaves

2. 

Thymus serpyllum L.

Breckland thyme, Wild thyme or Creeping thyme

Lamiaceae

Greenhouse

June

Leaves

3. 

Melissa officinalis L.

Lemon balm

Lamiaceae

Field

April

Leaves

4. 

Nepeta cataria L.

Catnip, Catswort, or Catmint

Lamiaceae

Field

April

Leaves

5. 

Dracocephalum heterophyllum Benth.

White dragonhead

Lamiaceae

Greenhouse

June

Leaves, flowers

6. 

Salvia sclarea L.

Clary or clary sage

Lamiaceae

Field

June, April

Leaves, flowers

7. 

Salvia officinalis L.

Garden sage, Common sage

Lamiaceae

Greenhouse & Field

April, July 

Leaves, stem, flowers

8. 

Artemisia pallens Wall. ex DC.

Davana, Dhavanam

Asteraceae

Greenhouse

July

Leaves, stem, buds, flowers

9 

Matricaria chamomilla Blanco

German chamomile

Asteraceae

Field

April

Leaves, flowers

10. 

Anacyclus pyrethrum (L.) Lag.

Pellitory, Spanish chamomile, or Mount atlas daisy

Asteraceae

Field

April

Buds, Flowers

11. 

Silybum marianum (L.) Gaertn.

Milk thistle

Asteraceae

Field

April

Buds, flower

12. 

Achillea millefolium Ladeb.

Yarrow

Asteraceae

Field

April

Buds,  Flower

13. 

Borago officinalis L.

Borage, Starflower

Boraginaceae

Field

April

Buds, flower

14. 

Plumbago zeylanica L.

Ceylon leadwort, Doctorbush

Plumbaginaceae

Field

November

Buds, Flower

15. 

Hypericum perforatum L.

Tipton's weed, chase-devil, or Klamath weed, St John's wort

Clusiaceae

Greenhouse

June

Leaves

16. 

Pelargonium graveolens L’Her

Rose geranium

Geraniaceae

Field

April, June

Leaves

17. 

Asparagus officinalis L.

Asparagus

Asparagaceae

Field

April

Leaves

18. 

Foeniculum vulgare Mill.

Fennel

Apiaceae

Field

April

Leaves, stem

19. 

Rosa damascena Mill.

Damask rose

Rosaceae

Field

March, April, May

Buds, flowers

20. 

Rosa bourboniana L.

Bourbon rose

Rosaceae

Field

April, May, June

Buds, flowers

 

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS


Author is grateful to the Director, CSIR-Institute of Himalayan Bioresource Technology for providing necessary facilities and infrastructure during the course of investigation and to Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, India for providing financial assistance for conducting this research.

 
 

REFERENCES

     
 

AgroAtlas. (2012) http://www.agroatlas.ru/en/content/pest
s/Helicoverpa_armigera/ [accessed 07 March 2012].

Nadda, G., D.K. Tewary, A. Shanker, & V. Singh. (2012) Salvia sclarea L. (Lamiales: Lamiaceae) - A new host record for Helicoverpa armigera (Hübner) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae). Munis Entomology & Zoology, 7(1): 642-645.

Sharma, H.C. (2001) Crop Protection Compendium; Commonwealth Agricultural Bureau International: Wallingford, U.K. 72pp.

Shelomi, M., L.E. Perkins, B.W. Cribb, & M.P. Zalucki, (2010) Effects of leaf surfaces on first-instar Helicoverpa armigera (Hübner) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) behaviour. Australian Journal of Entomology, 49: 289-295.


Site this article as:

Nadda G., (2013) Medicinal and aromatic crops as hosts of Helicoverpa armigera Hübner (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) - The Journal of Tropical Asian Entomology 02 (1): 44-46