Published on Tue, 02/09/2016 by BASF Canada

BASF helps break the Fusarium lifecycle

BASF helps break the Fusarium lifecycle

As Western Canada sees increasing levels of Fusarium, growers are looking for innovative solutions to minimize the disease presence, which can threaten yields by up to 50 per cent – and protect the quality of their cereal crops.

Fusarium graminearum has been expanding and exploding across Western Canada for several years,” said Bruce Carriere, president of Discovery Seed Labs based in Saskatoon, which tests thousands of seed samples per year. “Some things growers can do are to use seed lots with low levels of contaminants and to use a seed treatment. Once you have Fusarium graminearum on a field, you should be prepared to spray a fungicide at flowering.”

Growers turn to fungicides like Caramba to break the lifecycle of the soil-borne disease and to prevent Fusarium head blight from affecting the quality of their crops. Fungicide application is often used in combination with a high-quality Fusarium seed treatment, as an effective way to prevent disease transmission.

Application timing is critical to get the best return on a fungicide investment. Fungicide decisions should be based on field history, susceptibility of the crop, weather conditions and the crop’s total yield potential.

A seed treatment like Insure Cereal also helps improve seedling survival and vitality, through quicker germination and emergence along with enhanced ability to manage exposure to minor stress, leading to increased yields.

Research from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada has indicated that planting Fusarium-infected seed will also affect seedling emergence and tillering. More than 60 per cent of cereal seed in Western Canada is treated, mostly for disease protection.

“The key pathogen, Fusarium graminearum, survives on infested crop residues that are within a field or in an adjacent field,” said Dr. Kelly T. Turkington of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. “As the crop is developing, the fungus is also developing, and given favourable moisture and temperature, the fungus produces structures that release wind-borne spores. With favourable (conditions), you can have significant development of disease.”

During past seasons, Fusarium head blight has cut grain yields by as much as 50 per cent in some parts of Western Canada where Fusarium is a concern. Applying Caramba fungicide during heading can help preserve quality and protect your cereal’s yield potential and help avoid the further development of disease.



The Plant Disease Triangle

The Plant Disease Triangle shown above illustrates the intersection of conditions that can lead to the development of plant disease, including moisture and temperature, a pathogen such as wind-borne spores and the susceptible host, which is the effected crop.

Fusarium graminearum often develops quickly when a particular intersection of conditions – moisture, temperature, a pathogen such as wind-borne spores and a susceptible host – occurs.

For a complete, integrated disease control package, apply Insure Cereal on the seed, Twinline preventatively at the flag leaf stage and follow with a Caramba application.

BASF Canada provides information about managing stresses and diseases on its website, There, growers can learn more about threats in their area and hear from other growers who have tried various fungicides and herbicides on their own fields.

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