Ms Emeldah Rikhotso

MSc student


Biochemistry, Genetics and Microbiology
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Primary Supervisor
Jolanda Roux

Co Supervisor
Stuart Fraser
Izette Greyling

I have always been fascinated by plants and that drove me to do Agricultural science in high school.  Since then I have not looked back and my love for plants has since escalated and opened up a window for me to learn about plant diseases and plant protection.  It is, therefore, safe for me to say that I am living my dream. I am an MSc student studying Plant pathology in the Tree Protection Co-operative Programme (TPCP). My research project is on Eucalyptus leaf pathogens in South Africa, with particular reference to Teratosphaeria destructans, under the supervision of Prof Jolanda Roux and the co-supervision of Dr Stuart Fraser and Me. Izette Greyling. Teratosphaeria destructans is a leaf blight-causing pathogen on Eucalyptus trees which was initially found in Sumatra, Indonesia in 1995. However, in 2015 T. destructans was identified for the first time in South Africa. My studies will include the study of the epidemiology and infection strategy of Teratosphaeria destructans. I will develop an artificial technique to accurately evaluate commercial Eucalypt species for resistance to T.destructans. I will also do a survey on Eucalyptus grandis and hybrids of this species in the major plantation growing areas in South Africa, for the presence of leaf pathogens and identify those pathogens