Wheat Diseases and Fungicide Options

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As temperatures warm up, be on the lookout for diseases developing. While disease levels in TN wheat has remained low that can change quickly. This article provides some general info on common wheat diseases one might see and management options.

The main wheat diseases that occur in Tennessee include glume (stagonospora) blotch, septoria (Leaf) blotch, leaf rust, stripe rust, powdery mildew and fusarium head blight (scab). Short descriptions of fungal wheat diseases which include conditions for disease development, symptoms and specific management options can be found along with images in the Fungal Wheat Disease Identification publication (https://extension.tennessee.edu/publications/Documents/W662.pdf). General disease scouting time line and guidance on timing of fungicide can be found in the UT Extension Wheat Disease Management publication (https://extension.tennessee.edu/publications/Documents/W663.pdf).

It’s best to first identify the disease you’re trying to management and then choose the best fungicide for the job. The wheat fungicide efficacy table, that university wheat pathologists across the nation contribute to, is a good source to match fungicide efficacy to specific diseases. Each state will have its own version of the table, here is the TN Wheat Fungicide Efficacy publication (https://extension.tennessee.edu/publications/Documents/W341.pdf).

More updates on current risk for Fusarium Head Blight and stripe rust will be posted as the season progresses.

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