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[¦dam·piŋ ′ȯf]
(plant pathology)
A fungus disease of seedlings and cuttings in which the parasites invade the plant tissues near the ground level, causing wilting and rotting.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



the partial or complete destruction of winter wheats and other winter crops (such as perennial grasses) from “starvation” as a result of a prolonged period under deep snow cover.

Damping-off is caused by insufficient light, the cessation of the flow of water and food from the soil, and the high humidity and temperature under the snow. In these conditions new nutritive elements do not form in the plants, and those accumulated earlier are depleted. As a result, carbohydrate starvation sets in, followed by protein breakdown, and, finally, by disease (fusiarial wilt, sclerotinia rot, and others).

Damping-off occurs primarily in mild winters, especially on overgrown and not very hardy fall crops that were covered with a thick layer of snow that did not melt early in spring (in hollows, on the edge of forests). Damping-off also occurs when a thick layer of snow (40-50 cm) covers winter crops not prepared for wintering or soil that has not frozen through. A hanging ice crust that lets in light and hence raises the temperature can also be a cause of damping-off. In all of these instances, the active life processes of the plants continue, and their respiration increases.

In order to prevent damping-off of plants, sowing too early and too thickly and excessive nitrogen fertilizing should be avoided; use of a phosphoropotash fertilizer, resistant strains, hill sowing, and rollers to pack down snow on in-completely frozen soil are recommended.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
These results allowed us to identify the most aggressive strains to be used in the evaluation of resistance and will facilitate the work of breeders and pathologist working with damping-off of watermelon.
Dynamics of sugarbeet colonization by Pythium ultimum and Pseudomonas species: Effects on seed rot and damping-off. Phytopathol., 1989 ; 79: 709-716.
It has been observed from the present data provided in our study that the alkaloid berberine chloride is a potential new plant derived pesticide to control Rhizoctonia damping-off in vegetable seedlings.
If seed has been sown so thickly that the developing seedlings' leaves form a closed canopy over the soil, position a fan so that its air current lightly agitates the leaves, so as to carry away excess moisture and thus control the spread of damping-off fungus.
Enhancement of suppressive metabolites from Pseudomonas fluorescence against tomato damping-off pathogens.
Damping-off disease may be spread throughout infected containers.
Causes of seedling mortality were classified into four categories: (1) damping-off, (2) herbivory, (3) physical damage, and (4) unknown.
hamatum protected eggplant, pepper and zinnia seedlings from damping-off caused by R.
The bacteria are members of the genus Pseudomonas and include 11 strains that stymie the growth of Pythium and Rhizoctonia fungi, which are responsible for damping-off and root-rot diseases of wheat and barley.