Pepper Yellow Mottle Virus(PYMV) disease is the most harmful disease for pepper caused by a combination of viruses. Initial yellowish spots could be seen on young leaves and subsequent stunted growth of the vine, small, irregular leaves with yellow mosaic patches, Short internodes, and small spikes with half filled berries are visible symptoms. Gradually yield decline drastically. Disease is spread through vectors such as Pepper lace bug, Mealy bugs and infected planting material. No identified control measures except the use of healthy planting material and destroying infected plants and vector control.
Disease is caused by a fungus called Phytopthera capsisi. Base of the plant is infected first and basal parts of the vine get rotten which will spread into root system. When infected, plants get wilt and die within 2-3 weeks. Disease can be avoided by improving drainage and keeping the shade under control. When diseased infected plant parts should be removed and Bordeaux mixture or other fungicide should be sprayed into base of the vine.
Leaves become yellow in drought but gets normal after rain. This situation exits for about a year or two and finally plant become yellow and die. About 20-30% yield decline in pepper has been observed due to slow wilt. Slow wilt of pepper caused due to the damage to the root system by mechanical damages, nematode and insect damages and fungal attacks. To avoid the nematodes 03g of carbofuran should be added into pots or 30g of carbofuran should be added into planting hole. Experimental evidence has proved that application of Glyricidia lopping at four times a year reduces nematodes significantly. If the condition is serious infected plants should be uprooted and destroyed. Proper soil conservation and maintain organic matter content in soil minimize the incidence. Chemical treatment should be applied after confirmation of the real cause.
Lace bug is a vector of the PYMV disease. Population is rapidly increasing during the rainy season though the insect can be seen through out the year. Adult lay eggs underneath of the leaf and nymphs suck juices from immature plant parts and spikes. Brown spots can be seen on leaves and damaged spikes produce no or less berries. A significant yield loss can be seen when damage occur during flowering stage. Agronomic practices such as shade control and weed control is important for control the insect. If damage is serious chemical treatments can be applied.
Stem borers and leaf eating caterpillars are other important pests.
Harvesting and Post Harvest practices
Pepper is harvested after 7-8 months of maturity. To separate berries pepper corns are threshed manually or by using a mechanical thresher. Pepper berries can be directly dried under sun or can use artificial dryers. Sun drying takes 4-6 days. To get uniform black color, blanching of raw pepper is done by immersing berries in boiling water for about 03 minutes. Blanching reduces drying time by 2-3 days and also kills any microorganism presence. To produce white pepper fully ripened berries are immersed in water for about 5-6 days until the seed coat get rotten. Then the seed coat is removed by rubbing on a wire mesh or using mechanical decorticator. Remaining pepper seeds are thoroughly washed and dried to produce white pepper.
Standard quality specifications
Quality standards approved by the Sri Lanka Standard Institute are given below
Sp. Grade I Grade I
Mouldy berries % 1 1 2
Other extraneous matter %( insects live or dead, stones, sand, plant parts, mammalian fecal matter etc.) 1 1 2
Light berries % Max. 4 Max. 4 Max.10
Moisture % 12 14 14
Appearance Dark black colour with surface grooves Dark black to brownish black colur with surface grooves
Medicinal and Chemical Properties
Bioperine is a standardized extract from the fruits of black pepper (Piper nigrum) or long pepper (Piper longum). Its piperine content is 95% or more, compared to only 3-9% found in raw forms of these peppers. Black pepper extract, containing Bioperine has been used extensively in Ayurvedic medicine to treat fevers, digestive disorders, urinary difficulties, rheumatism, neuralgia and boils. Bioperine enhances the bioavailability of nutrients. Due to its ability to increase the absorption of nutrients comprising nutritional supplement formulations, bioperine has been termed a natural thermonutrient and bioavailability enhancer.
Last Updated on Monday, 16 August 2010 11:51
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