Jassid (Empoasca spp) is a key cotton pest in Zimbabwe capable of causing significant yield losses. To manage this pest, among other things, cotton genotypes are screened for tolerance to this pest and only resistant genotypes will be released as commercial varieties. The varieties which were released before for commercial production have high hair density. In the current work, five medium staple genotypes namely 645-98-11, 81-01-2, 85-01-1, 831-01-3 and CRI-MS1 were evaluated at two pest control regimes each for two seasons at Cotton Research Institute, Zimbabwe. A split plot design in randomized blocks was utilized. Genotypes which had low pest incidence were 645-98-11 and 81-01-2. The genotype 81-01-2 showed tolerance to jassids by having less pest counts and damage. The genotype 85-01-1 had highest population of jassids and damage. Genotypes that exhibited jassid tolerance can be used by farmers in an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) system to reduce reliance of synthetic pesticides for pest control.
Keywords: host plant resistance, tolerance, genotypes, trichomes, IPM, jassid