Charles Karavina

Charles Karavina


  1. PhD Plant Pathology (Virology) (University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa).
  2. MSc Crop Protection (University of Zimbabwe).
  3. BSc Agriculture Honours (Crop Science) (University of Zimbabwe)

Contact Details


Biographical sketch

Charles Karavina is a plant pathologist (plant virologist) at the level of an Associate Professor in the Crop Science Department at the Bindura University of Science Education. He has over 15 years of experience in academia. His research focusses on the identification and characterization of viruses infecting both field and greenhouse crops with the aim of developing sustainable strategies to control diseases caused by the viruses. He employs modern technologies to unambiguously characterize the plant viruses. He is a member of the CONNECTED Virus Network (, an international association of plant virologists and entomologists that aims to build a sustainable network of scientists and researchers to address the challenges of vector-borne plant viruses in Sub-Saharan Africa. He teaches and supervises both undergraduate and postgraduate students. Some of the courses he teaches include Introduction to Entomology and Nematology, Plant Protection, Plant Pathology, Insect Pest Management, Pesticide Science and Agronomy. He has published more than 40 articles in peer-reviewed journals. Through his research and community engagement activities, he has extensive experience in working with rural communities to improve agricultural productivity. He is a WK Kellogg’s Foundation scholar.

 Research Interests and Current Projects

His broad research interests are in crop protection (i.e., pest and disease identification and control). Current research projects include the following:

  1. Investigating endophytes in Zimbabwean cucurbit crops.
  2. Survey for cucurbit viruses in the stallholder farming communities of Zimbabwe.
  3. Management of orthotospoviruses in Zimbabwe.
  4. Use of botanicals to manage the fall armyworm by smallholder farmers in Zimbabwe.

Selected peer-reviewed publications (visit for the most up-to-date list).

  1. Karavina C, JD Ibaba and A Gubba. 2021. Potato virus Y isolates infecting bell pepper from parts of Southern Africa display distinct recombination patterns. Physiological and Molecular Plant Pathology.
  2. Karavina C., JD Ibaba and A. Gubba. 2020. Full genome sequence of a chrysanthemum-infecting tomato spotted wilt virus isolate from Zimbabwe obtained by Next-generation sequencing. Acta Virologica 64(1): 59-63.
  3. Karavina C, JD Ibaba and A Gubba. 2020. High-throughput sequencing of virus-infected Cucurbita pepo samples revealed the presence of Zucchini shoestring virus in Zimbabwe. BMC Research Notes 13: 53. DOI: 10.1186/s13104-020-4927-3.
  4. Musara C., C. Karavina, EB Aladejana, and SM. Mudyiwa. 2020. Parkia biglobosa (Mimosaceae): Botany, Uses, Phytochemical Properties and Pharmacological Potential. Journal of Pharmacy and Nutrition Sciences, 2020, 10, 101-115. DOI: 10.29169/1927-5951.2020.10.03.4
  5. Jan MT, SA Shad, C Karavina, M Ahmad, MA Saleem and M Binyameen. 2020. Economic analyses, injury levels and thresholds for effective management of Earis vittella (Fab.) on Gossypium hirsutum. Journal of Animal and Plant Sciences 30(3): 693-701. DOI: 10.36899/JAPS.2020.3.0052.
  6. Karavina C., JD Ibaba and A. Gubba. 2019. Characterization of three full Iris yellow spot virus genes of a garlic-infecting isolate from Zimbabwe using Next-generation sequencing technology. African Journal of Biotechnology. DOI: 10.5897/AJB2018.16738.
  7. Karavina C., JD Ibaba and A. Gubba. 2018. Genome sequence of a tomato-infecting Tomato mosaic virus isolate from Zimbabwe. Genome Announcements 6(11): e01457. DOI: 10.1128/genomeA.01457-17.
  8. Karavina C, VT Munyati and A. Gubba. 2017. Knowledge and perceptions of plant viral diseases by different stakeholders in Zimbabwe’s agricultural sector: Implications for disease management. African Journal of Agricultural Research Journal 12(21): 1832-1840. DOI: 10.5897/AJAR2016.11550.
  9. Karavina C and A. Gubba. 2017. Detection and characterization of Tomato spotted wilt virus infecting field and greenhouse-grown crops in Zimbabwe. European Journal of Plant Pathology 149:933-944. Doi: 10.1007/s10658-017-1243-4.
  10. Karavina C and A Gubba. 2017. An African perspective on tospoviruses. Journal of Plant Pathology 99(1): 5-16. Doi: 10.4454/jpp.v99i1.3814.
  11. Karavina C and A. Gubba. 2017. Iris yellow spot virus in Zimbabwe: Incidence, severity and characterization of Allium-infecting isolates. Crop Protection 94: 69-76. Doi: 10.1016/j.cropro.2016.12.019.
  12. Karavina C and A Gubba. 2017. Amaranthus sp. and Eleusine indica are natural hosts of Iris yellow spot virus in Zimbabwe. Plant Disease 101(1): 262.
  13. Karavina C, SF Ximba, JD Ibaba and A. Gubba. 2016. First report of a mixed infection of Potato virus Y and Tomato spotted wilt virus on Capsicum annuum in Zimbabwe. Plant Disease 100(7): 1512. DOI: 10.1094/PDIS-02-16-0185-PDN.
  14. Karavina C, JD Ibaba, A. Gubba and HR Pappu. 2016. First report of Iris yellow spot virus infecting garlic and leek in Zimbabwe. Plant Disease 100(3): 657. DOI: 10.1094/PDIS-09-15-1022-PDN.
  15. Karavina C, JD Ibaba and A. Gubba. 2016. First report of Tomato spotted wilt virus infecting butternut squash (Cucurbita moschata) in Zimbabwe. Plant Disease 100(4): 870. DOI. 10.1094/PDIS-09-15-1021-PDN.
  16. Karavina C, JD Ibaba and A. Gubba. 2016. First report of Iris yellow spot virus infecting onion in Zimbabwe. Plant Disease 100(1): 235. DOI: 10.1094/PDIS-07-15-0814-PDN.
  17. Mandumbu R., C Karavina, H Tibugari, L. Mandizvidza, S. Mhungu and J. Rugare. 2016. Allelopathic potential of sorghum, wheat and maize residue extracts on the germination and early establishment of Amaranthus hybridus and Rottboellia cochinchinensis. Journal of Applied Sciences in Southern Africa 22(2): 21-29.
  18. Parwada C., C. Karavina, A. Kamota, R. Mandumbu and R. Marova. 2016. Effect of planting basin depth on the growth and performance of mays (Zea mays). Scientia Agriculturae 13(1): 30-36.
  19. Parwada C., C. Karavina, A. Kamota, R. Mandumbu and S. Nyemba. 2016. Evaluation of seasonal rainfall changes on the growth performance of Vigna unguiculata (cowpeas) in Zimbabwe. Academic Journal of Agricultural Research 4: 67-71.
  20. Karavina C, A Kamota, R Mandumbu, C Parwada, I Mugwati and B Masamha. 2015. Nematicidal effects of brassica formulations against root knot nematodes (Meloidogyne javanica) in tomatoes (Solanum lycopersicum). Pakistan Journal of Phytopathology 27(2): 109-114.
  21. Karavina C. 2014. Maize streak virus: a review of pathogen occurrence, biology and management options for smallholder farmers. African Journal of Agricultural Research 9(36): 2736-2742.
  22. Karavina C, Mandumbu R, Zivenge E and T Munetsi. 2014. Use of garlic (Allium sativum) as a repellant crop to control diamondback moth (Plutella xylostella) in cabbages (Brassica oleraceae var capitata). Journal of Agricultural Research 52(4): 615-621.
  23. Karavina C, Mandumbu R and R Mukaro. 2014. Evaluation of three-way maize (Zea mays L.) hybrids for yield and resistance to Maize streak virus and turcicum leaf blight diseases. The Journal of Animal and Plant Sciences 24(1): 216-220.
  24. Chikuvire TJ, Karavina C, Parwada C and BT Maphosa. 2013. Lantana camara and Tithonia diversifolia leaf teas improve growth and yield of Brassica napus. African Journal of Agricultural Research 8(48): 6220-6225.
  25. Mandumbu R., C. Karavina and T. Muoni. 2013. Effect of temperature, residue level and burial depth on germination of two weeds: implications to conservation agriculture. African Crop Science Conference Proceedings 11: 97-100.
  26. Mandumbu R, N. Muchiwanga, C. Karavina and H. Tibugari. 2012. Plasticity of Rottboellia cochichinensis L. to soil type and drought: Implications to geographical distribution in Zimbabwe. Journal of Applied Science in Southern Africa 18(1): 47-54. ISSN 1019-7788.
  27. Karavina C and Mandumbu R. 2012. Biofumigation for crop protection: potential for adoption in Zimbabwe. Journal of Animal and Plant Sciences 14(3):1996-2005. Available online ISSN 2071 – 7024.
  28. Karavina C and Mandumbu R. 2012. Phytoparasitic Nematode Management Post-Methyl Bromide: Where to for Zimbabwe? International Journal of Agricultural Technology 8(4): 1141-1160. Available online ISSN 1686-9141.
  29. Tibugari H, Jowah P, Mandumbu R and C. Karavina. 2012. Tackling diamondback moth Plutella xylostella resistance: a review on the current research on vegetable integrated pest management in Zimbabwe. Archives of Phytopathology and Plant Protection 45(20): 2445-2453.
  30. Mandumbu R, Twomlow SJ, Jowah P, Mashingaidze N, Hove L and C Karavina. 2012. Weed seed bank response to tillage and residue management in semi-arid Zimbabwe. Archives of Phytopathology and Plant Protection 45(18): 2165-2176.
  31. Tibugari H, Mandumbu R, Jowah P and C. Karavina. 2012. Farmer knowledge, attitude and practice on cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L) pest resistance management strategies in Zimbabwe. Archives of Phytopathology and Plant Protection 45(20): 2395-2405.
  32. Karavina C., R. Mandumbu, C Parwada and T. Mungunyana. 2012. Variety and Planting Date Effects on the Incidence of Bollworms and Insect Sucking Pests of Cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.). Research Journal of Agricultural Sciences 3(3): 607-610. Available online at ISSN 0976-1675.
  33. Parwada C, Gadzirayi CT, Karavina C, Kubiku F, Mandumbu R, and BZ Madumbu. 2012. Tagetes minuta formulation effect Sitophilus zeamais (weevils) control in stored maize grain. International Journal of Plant Research 2(3): 65-68. p-ISSN: 2163-2596.
  34. Mandumbu R and C Karavina. 2012. Weed suppression and minor crop response in maize/pumpkin intercropping systems of Zimbabwe. Journal of Agricultural Science 4(7): 231-236. Available online at ISSN 1916-5539.
  35. Zivenge E and C Karavina. 2012. Analysis of factors influencing market channel access by communal horticulture farmers in Chinamhora District, Zimbabwe. Journal of Development and Agricultural Economics 4(6): 147-150. Available online ISSN 2006-9774.
  36. Tibugari H, Mombeshora D, Mandumbu R, Karavina C and C. Parwada. 2012. A comparison of the effectiveness of the aqueous extracts of garlic, castor beans and marigold in the biocontrol of root-knot nematode in tomato. International Journal of Agricultural Technology 8(2): 479-492. Available online ISSN 1686-9141.
  37. Mandumbu R, Twomlow S, Jowah P, Mashingaidze N, L Hove and C Karavina. 2011. Weed seedbank community diversity under tillage and residue levels in a semi-arid region. Journal of Applied Science in Southern Africa 17(2): 25-39. ISSN 1019-7788.
  38. Karavina C., R. Mandumbu, C. Parwada and H. Tibugari. 2011. A review of the occurrence, biology and management of common bacterial blight. International Journal of Agricultural Technology 7(6): 1459-1474. Available online ISSN 1686-9141.
  39. Karavina C, R. Mandumbu, C. Parwada and E. Zivenge. 2011. Epiphytic survival of Xanthomonas phaseoli (E. F. SM). Journal of Animal and Plant Sciences 9(2): 1161- 1168.
  40. Karavina C, E. Zivenge, R. Mandumbu and C. Parwada. 2011. Jatropha curcas Production in Zimbabwe: Uses, Challenges and The Way Forward. Modern Applied Science 5(2): 239-243.
  41. Mandumbu R, Jowah P, Karavina C and H Tibugari. 2011. Integrated Weed Management in Zimbabwe’s Smallholder Sector, Where Are We? A Review. Modern Applied Science 5(5): 111-117.
  42. Karavina C, Chihiya J, and TA Tigere. 2008. Detection and Characterization of Xanthomonas phaseoli (E.F.SM) in common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L) seeds collected in Zimbabwe. Journal of Sustainable Development in Africa 10(1): 105-118.
  43. Karavina C, TA Tigere and J Chihiya. 2008. The contribution of soil and crop debris inocula to the outbreak of common bacterial blight in field beans (Phaseolus vulgaris L) under Zimbabwean conditions. Journal of Sustainable Development in Africa 10(3): 221-233.