With many threats to wheat root health, it important to be proactive in management decisions. Particularly, stopping damage caused by Rhizocotnia, Pythium and Fusarium as early as possible is critical to helping ensure optimum root health and maximum yield potential in cereals. To get ahead of these diseases and help crops develop with healthy, efficient root systems, we recommend the following to growers:
- Plant certified seed. When available, select varieties with genetic tolerance.
- Monitor soil fertility levels. Balanced soil fertility is extremely important to mitigate plant stress.
- Rotate to a non-host crop to help break the disease cycle.
- Plant into well-drained soils. Soilborne diseases thrive in wet conditions.
- Destroy any green residue in fields at least 2 weeks before planting begins to eradicate the “green bridge” effect, break disease cycles and reduce chances of soilborne pathogens carrying over from past seasons.
- Continuously scout fields for symptoms of soilborne pathogens to manage diseases early.
- Apply a seed treatment to protect crops from the start. Fungicide and insecticide seed treatments help prevent the spread of plant diseases and keep insects at bay.
Choosing an early disease management plan, best variety and seed treatment is key to steering clear of soilborne pathogens and underground insects, which provides growers with the best chance for success. Following best practices, monitoring fields and speaking with area crop consultants, agronomists and retailers can help make sound decisions for getting your crop off to a solid start this season.
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