Mr Phinda Magagula

PhD student


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Primary Supervisor
Noelani van den Berg

Co Supervisor
Velushka Swart

My research focuses on the microbiomes and plant protection. The pathogen of interest is Dematophora necatrix (previously known as Rosellinia necatrix) and the host is the avocado tree.  The project has two areas of interest:

  • Understand the role of rhizosphere microbiome on D. necatrix infected avocado trees
  • Unravel the impact of D. necatrix on soil nutrients availability
  • investigate culturable fungi and bacteria against D. necatrix using antagonistic experiments 
  • Investigate the effectiveness of fluazinam (fungcide) and extrasol (biocontrol) against D. necatrix in avocado commercial orchards

Our findings have far-reaching implications for the development of effective control strategies that can mitigate the protection of avocado trees in the absence of a D. necatrix-tolerant avocado rootstock. This pioneering study provides a broader understanding of the complex relationships between avocado plants and their associated rhizosphere microbiomes. We will further contribute towards the registration of fluazinam as a fungcide for the management of D. necatrix in commercial avocado orchards in South Africa.

Export to RIS
Magagula P, Taylor N, Swart V, Van den Berg N. (2021) Efficacy of Potential Control Agents Against Rosellinia necatrix and Their Physiological Impact on Avocado. Plant Disease 105(11):PDIS-08. 10.1094/PDIS-08-20-1751-RE