Farm Management

Monitor for stripe rust infections emerging in wheat

Stripe rust

Growers are being urged to be vigilant when inspecting wheat crops, following the identification of stripe rust infection.

Infections were found in susceptible varieties in western and central Victoria and is likely to be the same strain that caused issues in 2020.

Agriculture Victoria research scientist Dr Mark McLean advises growers and consultants to inspect cereal crops for symptoms and determine the need to apply foliar fungicides.

Dr McLean said growers should check the latest disease resistance ratings in the Victorian Cereal Disease Guide to identify the varieties at greatest risk.

“This is a relatively early infection for stripe rust and it could be a sign of significant issues if conditions continue to be favourable.”

“Rusts have the potential to cause more than 30 per cent yield loss in susceptible varieties, if unmanaged,” he said.

Growers and advisors are encouraged to adopt a three-step approach to assess stripe rust infection.

  1. Review variety ratings using a current cereal disease guide. To ensure the ratings are current do not use one from previous years. The current Victorian guide can be found on the Agriculture Victoria website.
  2. Monitor crops closely
  3. Use the StripeRustWM app to support decision making. The app can be downloaded from the Apple and Google Play stores.

“The StripeRustWM app is a useful tool to support decisions around stripe rust management. The app was developed by the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development and has been tested in Victoria in recent years to validate results,” Dr McLean said.

Wheat stripe rust is expected to develop in susceptible crops during the next few weeks as temperatures increase.

Dr McLean said that adult plant resistance (APR) in some varieties will provide some control later in the season. But many adult plant resistance genes are less effective during cooler conditions, providing less protection in the advanced early sown crops.

Dr McLean encouraged any growers who have found rust to send a sample to the Australian Cereal Rusts Survey to help researchers understand the distribution of rust species and whether any new pathotypes have emerged. More information: cereal-rust-sample-submission-guide.pdf (sydney.edu.au)

Agriculture Victoria and the Grains Research Development Corporation collaborate on research into cereal rust diseases.

Further information on wheat stripe rust and management options can be found at: https://extensionaus.com.au/FieldCropDiseasesVic/

Source: Agriculture Victoria

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