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PestNet is a network that helps people worldwide obtain rapid advice and information on crop protection, including the identification and management of plant pests. It started in 1999. Anyone with an interest in plant protection is welcome to join. PestNet is free and is moderated, ensuring that messages are confined to plant protection.
Crops > Fruits & nuts > Morinda citrifolia > Diseases of kava and noni, Pacific Islands
August 2011. What pests and diseases have been found in south Pacific countires asked Samoa.
Guam said that Phyllosticta morindae(Physalospora morindae) reported on Morinda citrifolia; nothing is reported on Piper methysticum. There is also a very comprehensive lists of pests and diseases of both kava and noni on the Plant Doctor website Scott Nelson, University of Hawaii. There are detailed fact sheets on kava dieback, kava root-knot nematode, noni root-knot nematode and black flag of noni, as well as many other publications profiling these two crops, and an image gallery of many minor pests and diseases. See:
SPC, the Secretariat for the Pacific Community, mentioned the organisation’s Pest List Database which should contain records for several South Pacific countries. In addition, the ACIAR projects on kava dieback in the late 80s through to 1994 resulted in a Technical Report No. 46: Kava (Piper methysticum) in the South Pacific. As for noni, contact SPC for news of recent records, including reports of a phytoplasma-associated disease.
As for insects, there are no major pests as yet, although caterpillars, scale insects (plus ants) and cerambycid borers have been indentified. However, once the plant is grown in monoculture and farmers start to apply pesticides, the situation will change. It is best to grow the noni in a mix stands with other crops.
And as for nematodes, there are several species associated with noni with, perhaps, root-knot nematodes as being the worse. The most common is Meloidogyne incognita, which is present in Samoa. Farms in Cook Islands, Niue and Fiji have also experienced problems with this species. It is best to raise seedlings in sterilised soil, rather than direct seeding.