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Application of Bioactive Coatings Based on Chitosan and Propolis for Pinus spp. Protection against Fusarium circinatum

1
Department of Agricultural and Forestry Engineering, ETSIIAA, University of Valladolid, Avenida de Madrid 44, 34004 Palencia, Spain
2
Sustainable Forest Management Research Institute, University of Valladolid—INIA, Avenida de Madrid 57, 34004 Palencia, Spain
3
Department of Plant Production and Forestry Resources, ETSIIAA, University of Valladolid, Avenida de Madrid 44, 34004 Palencia, Spain
4
Department of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, EPS, Instituto Universitario de Investigación en Ciencias Ambientales de Aragón (IUCA), Universidad de Zaragoza, Carretera de Cuarte s/n, 22071 Huesca, Spain
5
Department of Biology & CESAM (Centre for Environmental and Marine Studies), University of Aveiro, Campus Universitario de Santiago, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Forests 2018, 9(11), 685; https://doi.org/10.3390/f9110685
Received: 25 September 2018 / Revised: 25 October 2018 / Accepted: 26 October 2018 / Published: 2 November 2018
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Abstract

Pine pitch canker (PPC) is a major threat to pine forests worldwide because of the extensive tree deaths, reduced growth, and degradation of timber quality caused by it. Furthermore, the aggressive fungus responsible for this disease (Fusarium circinatum) can also infect pine seeds, causing damping-off in young seedlings. This study proposes an approach based on coating treatments consisting of natural products to ensure seed protection. Seeds from two pine species (the most sensitive to this disease, Pinus radiata D. Don, and a more resistant one, Pinus sylvestris L.) were coated with single and binary mixtures of low and medium molecular weight chitosan and/or ethanolic-propolis extract. The germination rate, pre- and post-emergence mortality, total phenolic content, and radical scavenging activity were assessed. All treatments, and especially the one based on chitosan oligomers, had a beneficial impact on P. sylvestris seedlings, significantly enhancing survival rates and displaying a positive influence on the total phenolic content and on the seedlings’ radical scavenging activity. Conversely, non-significant negative effects on germination percentages were observed in the case of P. radiata seeds. The proposed treatments show promise for the protection of P. sylvestris seedlings against PPC. View Full-Text
Keywords: antifungal; antioxidant; natural coating; seed protection; total phenolic content antifungal; antioxidant; natural coating; seed protection; total phenolic content
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Silva-Castro, I.; Diez, J.J.; Martín-Ramos, P.; Pinto, G.; Alves, A.; Martín-Gil, J.; Martín-García, J. Application of Bioactive Coatings Based on Chitosan and Propolis for Pinus spp. Protection against Fusarium circinatum. Forests 2018, 9, 685.

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