Delhi Defense Cucumber

Delhi Defense offers protection against the ToLCNDV virus

Rijk Zwaan’s Delhi Defense cucumber varieties protect against infection with the tomato leaf curl New Delhi virus (ToLCNDV or New Delhi virus). This virus creates lots of production problems for cucumber growers, especially in the Mediterranean region. Resistant varieties offer them a solution. Delhi Defense is part of Rijk Zwaan’s Defense label.

"The variety has a very good production, high fruit quality and a very strong resistance package."

- Juan Jose Rodriguez, Spanish cucumber grower

Why growers choose Delhi Defense

The New Delhi virus causes a severe loss of production in cucumber plants, and the fruit quality suffers too. Delhi Defense cucumber varieties are more productive and achieve better fruit quality. If an infection does occur, the plants exhibit only minimal symptoms. Another important benefit is the fact that the New Delhi varieties are part of Rijk Zwaan’s Blueleaf line of cucumbers that have a stronger natural resistance against pests and diseases.

Benefits of Delhi Defense

  • Stable production
  • Better fruit quality
  • Minimal symptoms if an infection occurs
  • Varieties are part of the Blueleaf line

Cucumber varieties with Delhi Defense

The Delhi Defense cucumber varieties are indicated by the Delhi Defense label. These varieties are the result of many years of research and breeding work by the Rijk Zwaan team.

ToLCNDV virus in susceptible cucumber varieties

The whitefly Bemisia tabaci is the main source of virus spread both in greenhouses and outdoors. One single whitefly can transmit the virus for weeks and sometimes for its entire lifetime. Moreover, a wide range of host plants are susceptible to the New Delhi virus. As a result, the virus poses a major threat to cucumber production.

While the symptoms of this virus in cucumbers are relatively mild compared to other crops, they are nevertheless serious. The plants continue to grow, but lose much of their productivity. The most common symptom in cucumber crops is yellow mottling, which later turns into severe patchy yellowing and moderate leaf curling.

Trials reveal clear differences

Trials in greenhouses with a high infection level of the New Delhi virus have demonstrated that the resistant varieties remain healthy, whereas the susceptible varieties in the same greenhouse display clear signs of infection and loss of productivity.

Fewer infections occur in Delhi Defense cucumber varieties, but if infections do occur the disease has virtually no symptoms or effects. Moreover, the Delhi Defense varieties are part of Rijk Zwaan’s Blueleaf line of cucumber varieties that have a stronger natural resistance against pests and diseases.

Minimising the risk of spread

Although resistant cucumber varieties offer a high level of protection, it remains important to minimise the risk of infection. To ensure a healthy crop, growers are advised to choose a Delhi Defense variety, keep the whitefly population down and closely monitor the development of symptoms.