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Download - Agronomy Day - University of Illinois at Urbana ...

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TOUR AManaging Fusarium

TOUR AManaging Fusarium head blight (scab) of wheatFusarium head blight (FHB), also known as “scab,” is adisease of wheat that can cause loss of both yield andquality. Symptoms appear as “bleached heads” or headswith both green and bleached areas (Figure 4). The fungusFusarium graminearum (aka Gibberella zeae) causesFHB of wheat and can cause Gibberella stalk and ear rotof corn. The fungus also produces the toxin deoxynivalenol(DON, or vomitoxin), which can contaminate grainand be a serious problem for millers. Weather is an extremelyimportant factor in the development of FHB, especiallyfrom flowering through kernel development.Moderate temperatures (75 to 85 °F), prolonged periodsof high humidity, and prolonged wet periods favor FHBdevelopment.Successfully managing FHB requires an integrated approach,where the use of resistant varieties, better cropsequences, and fungicides can limit losses due to FHB:Resistant varieties. Although no varieties are immuneto FHB, some are more resistant than others. TheCarl A. BradleyDepartment of Crop Sciencesassociate professor and extensionplant pathologist,carlbrad@illinois.edu,217-244-7415Fred KolbDepartment of Crop Sciencesprofessor and small grains breeder,f-kolb@illinois.edu,217-333-9485University of Illinois Winter Wheat Breeding Program hasbeen developing wheat varieties with partial resistance toFHB. In addition, the University of Illinois Wheat BreedingProgram has been rating wheat varieties for FHB severityunder high-pressure FHB environments over multipleyears. These ratings are available online at the Universityof Illinois Variety Testing site, located in the “Small Grains”section (vt.cropsci.uiuc.edu).Cropping sequence. Because corn stubble can harborthe FHB fungus (Figure 5A), wheat following soybeanis at a lower risk of developing FHB than wheat followingcorn.Figure 4. Symptoms of Fusarium head blight of wheat. Photo courtesy of Carl Bradley.14AGRONOMY DAY 2013

Figure 5A. Fruiting bodies (perithecia, observed as “black dots”) of thewheat scab fungus on a corn stalk. Photo courtesy of Carl Bradley.Foliar fungicides. Multiple fungicides are registeredfor use on wheat, but only a few are effective in managingFHB. Fungicides available for FHB management all belongto the triazole class: Caramba (BASF Corp.),Prosaro (Bayer CropScience), Proline (Bayer Crop-Science), and products that contain tebuconazole as theirsolo active ingredient. Of these products, the best efficacyin multistate university field research trials has beenobtained with Prosaro and Caramba. Proper applicationtiming is critical in achieving the best efficacy. The besttiming is considered to be when plants are beginning toflower (early anthesis; Feeks growth stage 10.5.1; Figure5B). It also is important to spray with nozzles oriented tospray forward, which helps cover the wheat head. In thepast, recommendations were to use nozzles that sprayedboth forward and backward; however, recent research outof North Dakota State University has shown that “forward-facing”nozzles may be all that are needed.Fungicides that contain an active ingredient in the“strobilurin” class should never be applied to controlFHB. This includes products like Headline, Quadris, Quilt,and Stratego. Research has shown that strobilurinfungicides can actually increase DON levels in harvestedgrain. These strobilurin products are very good at controllingfoliar diseases of wheat; if used, they should be appliedearlier in the season.FHB forecasting. To help with fungicide applicationdecisions, see the Fusarium Head Blight Prediction Centerat www.wheatscab.psu.edu. A “risk map,” developedbased on weather conditions that have occurred, showsthe risk of FHB throughout Illinois (Figure 6).Integrated management. The best control of FHBand DON occurs when all of the management practicesdescribed here are integrated.TOUR AFungicide Application timing % controlof FHB*Prosaro at 6.5 fl oz Feekes 10.5 35 bFeekes 10.5.159 a5 days after Feekes 10.5.1 37 bCaramba at 13.5 fl oz Feekes 10.5 38 bFeekes 10.5.161 a5 days after Feekes 10.5.1 36 b* Values followed by the same letter are not significantly different;95% confidence.Figure 6. Screen capture of the Fusarium head blight prediction tool fromMay 9, 2013 (available at www.wheatscab.psu.edu).AcknowledgmentsFunding from the U.S. Wheat & Barley Scab Initiativesupports research on Fusarium head blight at the Universityof Illinois.Figure 5B. Results summary of University of Illinois fungicide trials onwheat.AGRONOMY DAY 201315

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