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Diseases of Horticultural Crops and their Management


The pests and diseases of horticultural crops not only reduce the productive capability but also adversely affect the quality. With the changing climate, horticultural crops not only reduce the productive capability but also adversely affect the quality. With the changing climate, horticultural crops have become vulnerable to hazards of pests and diseases, playing a major role in causing threat to food security. 

In order to reduce the yield loss of horticultural crops, due to pests and diseases, agricultural professionals should be well-informed about their management. 

By the end of this course, the students will be able to know the distribution of plant diseases and their economic importance, identify the diseases based on the symptomatology and the factors influencing the disease development, and acquaint themselves with integrated disease management practices.




Course Staff Image #1

Dr. Pratibha Sharma, Professor

Dr. Pratibha Sharma, Professor, Division of Plant Pathology, IARI, joined Agricultural Research Services in 1976 after completion of M Sc in Botany (Plant Pathology) from Rajasthan University. She completed her Ph D from Kanpur University as an in-service candidate while serving as a scientist in the Institute of Pulses Research, Kanpur (1990). Trained in host–pathogen interaction from Gottingen University and Pflanzenschutz in Ackerbau Grunland (BBA), Germany in 1993-94 through UNDP-FAO Fellowship, she also has expertise in variability in plant pathogens, characterization of pathogenic variables, biological control, microbial and green pesticides, resistance, IPM, and IDM in different cropping systems.

Course Staff Image #2

Dr. T Samuel S K Patro, Senior Scientist

Dr. T Samuel SK Patro, did his Master's and Ph D in Plant Pathology from Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi, with three institution gold medals for his outstanding academic performance. He has also won more than 12 young scientist and distinguished scientist awards from various scientific societies. He presented several lead papers in various national and international conferences including China and USA. He has published more than 50 research papers, 75 popular articles and several book chapters in his field of specialization. Presently he is working as an Officer in Charge of All Indian Coordinated Small millets improvement projects at Agricultural Research Station, Vizianagaram, Andhra Pradesh, India.

Course Staff Image #2

Dr. P Kishore Varma, Assistant Professor

Dr. P Kishore Varma is Assistant Professor at Department of Plant Pathology, College of Agriculture, Rajendranagar, Hyderabad. He did his M Sc from UAS, Dharwad, Karnataka and Ph D from CCSHAU, Hisar, Haryana. He was awarded gold medals in M Sc (Ag) and B Sc (Ag) for securing highest OGPA during his course of study. He has seven years of experience in teaching all under-graduate courses in Plant Pathology and two years of experience in research. He has prepared course material for all Plant Pathology courses offered in B Sc (Ag). He has published 15 research papers in national journals, 6 book chapters, 6 extension bulletins, 2 experimental manuals and 27 popular articles.

Course Staff Image #2

Dr. K Gopal, Associate Dean

Dr. K Gopal completed his Master’s in Agriculture, specializing in Plant Pathology in 1987, from APAU, Hyderabad. After this he enrolled for his Ph D in Plant Pathology from UAS, Bangalore, and completed it in 1999. During his Ph D he was awarded with the “Senior Research Fellowship” by CSIR, New Delhi during 1992-95. His contribution to science has been considerably remarkable, fetching him great honour and recognition both nationally and internationally. So far in his academic oriented career he has published 2 books, submitted 97 research papers, 11 research articles have been published and has presented 84 research conference seminar papers all together. Currently, he is serving as the Associate Dean in Dr. Y.S.R. Horticultural University, Venkataramannagudem.


1. What topics will the course cover?

The course will follow the outline of the curriculum of PATH 372 that is offered at the State Agricultural Universities in India. However, the curriculum in this course brings up-to-date research information. The topics of this course cover economic importance and distribution, symptoms, cause, disease cycle and management of diseases of important horticultural crops.

2. Who can enroll for this course?

This course can be attended by all students of State Agricultural Universities and interested agricultural professionals.

3. Can faculty at the State Agricultural Universities use the curriculum?

The faculty at the State Agricultural Universities can use the curriculum as supplementary material through the flipped classroom approach.

4. What is flipped classroom approach?

The flipped classroom model is an inverted and technologically advanced form of the traditional teaching method, where the lessons are watched online/offline and later discussed/clarified along with the homework, in the presence of a faculty.

5. Can I get a certificate after completion of the course?

NVAforIA MOOCs are non-credit-bearing. Yes, students who complete a course will get a certificate signed by the in-charge of NVAforIA. These will be 'honour code certificates'. The certificate is referred to as an 'honour code certificate', meaning that its issuance assumes that the student followed the IITBombayX Honour Code in completing the course work. The certificate is not directly transferable or 'negotiable' as course credit, at any university. After completion of the course and test, the participant will receive the certificate awarded by the NVAforIA, led by ICRISAT and partners.

6. What is National Virtual Academy for Indian Agriculture?

National Virtual Academy for Indian Agriculture is a regional initiatve of One Agriculture One Science. It is an initiative led by a strategic coalition of partners (national and international research and academic institutions) to promote Massive Open Online Courses for Agricultural Professionals.


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