In the recent years, the need to increase food production to meet the demands of rapidly increasing population from a limited land resource necessitated the use of intensive farming systems, with the inputs like narrow genetic base, high dose of fertilizers, pesticides, irrigation, monocropping, etc. which led to the development of diseases and pest. The effect of changing global climate, particularly the sharp increase in CO2 concentration, has increased the susceptibility of plants to pathogens and pests. Because of the chemicalization of agriculture, the age-old eco-friendly pest management practices like sanitation, crop rotation, mixed cropping, adjustment of date of planting, fallowing, summer ploughing, green manuring, composting, etc. are not being practiced, affecting the crops adversely. This has encouraged researchers to look for eco-friendly and novel approaches for pest management.
The information on recent advances in crop protection (involving bacteria, fungi, nematodes, insects, mites and weeds) is scattered. Recent Advances in Crop Protection delves upon the most latest developments in crop protection such as avermectins, bacteriophages, biofumigation, biotechnological approaches; bio-priming of seeds; disguising the leaf surface; use of non-pathogenic strains, plant defense activators, plant growth promoting rhizobacteria, pathogenesis-related proteins, strobilurin fungicides, RNA interference, and variety of mixtures/cultivar mixtures/multilines; soil solarization; biointensive integrated pest management; among several others (fusion protein-based biopesticides, seed mat technology and environmental methods). Recent Advances in Crop Protection is a ready reference for students, policy-makers, scientists, researchers and extension workers.
Dr P Parvatha Reddy obtained his PhD degree in Plant Pathology jointly from the University of Florida, USA, and the University of Agricultural Sciences, Bangalore. He served as the Director of the prestigious Indian Institute of Horticultural Research (IIHR) at Bangalore from 1999 to 2002 during which period the Institute was honoured with "ICAR Best Institution Award". He also served as the Head, Division of Entomology and Nematology at IIHR and gave tremendous impetus and direction to research, extension and education in developing bio-intensive integrated pest management strategies in horticultural crops. Dr. Reddy has about 34 years of experience working with horticultural crops and is involved in developing an F1 tomato hybrid "Arka Varadan" resistant to root-knot nematodes. He has over 237 scientific publications to his credit, which also include 22 books. Dr Reddy has been honoured with the following prestigious Awards: "Association for Advancement Pest Management in Horticultural Ecosystems Award", "Dr. G.I. D'souza Memorial Lecture Award", "Prof. H.M. Shah Memorial Award" and " Hexamar Agricultural Research and Development Foundation Award" for his unstinted efforts in developing sustainable, bio-intensive and eco-friendly integrated pest management strategies in horticultural crops.