Cropping

Vic cereal disease guide helps prevent yield loss

Grain Central, February 25, 2022

Agriculture Victoria senior research scientist Grant Hollaway. Photo: Agriculture Victoria

AGRICULTURE Victoria has released a 2022 Cereal Disease Guide to provide grain growers with updated information on crop-disease ratings and advice on how to reduce the risk from disease.

Produced with support from the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC), the guide promotes the importance of checking the latest cereal-disease ratings for all growers when making plans for this season. 

Agriculture Victoria senior research scientist Grant Hollaway said an example of a disease that will be important this season is stripe rust, which can cause significant yield losses in wheat. 

“There will be disease carryover on volunteer cereals growing over summer due to recent above-average rainfall,” Dr Hollaway said.

“Due to the long-range dispersal of rust spores, even the green bridge in New South Wales will have implications for Victorian growers.” 

Victorian growers need to plan for the increased risk posed by stripe rust this year.

Increased risk from stripe rust

Dr Hollaway said because of the heightened risk posed by stripe rust this year, it will be important to remove volunteer cereals before the end of March and plant rust-resistant varieties of wheat when possible. 

“We encourage growers to consider use of seed or fertiliser applied fungicides and monitor crops closely.”

In planning for the increased risk from stripe rust, and other diseases, growers should review the  disease ratings in the new cereal disease guide.  

Dr Hollaway advises that the disease ratings can identify which varieties are at risk from disease  this year and require additional management during the season. 

“Another reason to check the new guide is because a variety’s rating can change,” he said.

“Therefore, changes in disease management may also be required.” 

Dr Hollaway recommends using the tablet-based app StripeRustWM, to support in-crop fungicide decisions.

The app is free for iPad and Android tablet users and can be downloaded from the  Apple App or Google Play stores. 

The new disease ratings provided in the cereal disease guide are based on an understanding of the diseases present in Victoria and on data collected from plant pathologists working across Australia with support from the GRDC. 

The 2022 Cereal Disease Guide is available here.

Source: Agriculture Victoria

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