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Blackleg in canola – Snapshot October 2019

Blackleg in canola

Blackleg in canola can cause severe yield loss, but can be successfully managed. Keep up with the latest information from the southern region on blackleg.                                                                                                        Information has been sorted by source, click on the title to view the full article, YouTube clip or podcast.


The BlacklegCM App

Steve Marcroft explains the value of the new BlacklegCM app and how you can use it to compare management strategies for your canola crop.

Generating blackleg resistance groups

The Blackleg Management Guide not only provides blackleg resistance ratings but also blackleg resistance groups for current canola cultivars. 

Have you wondered how researchers establish these ratings? Steve Marcroft talked us through how researchers establish resistance groups for canola cultivars, and more importantly, why you should know the resistance groups of the cultivars you grow to manage the blackleg population on your farm.

Benchmarking blackleg fungicide resistance

Understanding the current levels of fungicide resistance in blackleg populations is key to monitoring the effectiveness of current fungicides and new chemistries entering the market.

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Investment in screening program to help fight canola devastation caused by blackleg

Blackleg is deserving of its ominous common name as it is the most devastating of all diseases for canola and nearly brought the fledgling Australian canola industry to its knees in the 1970s.

Canola yield loss from upper canopy blackleg infection can be reduced

Key points

  • Upper canopy blackleg infection in canola can reduce yield by up to 30 per cent
  • The symptoms are not always obvious and may be highly variable
  • If you see symptoms but are confused, CSIRO Agriculture and Food Senior Research Scientist, Dr Susie Sprague is happy to receive a text message with a few photos to assist identification
  • Control strategies include delaying flowering in high-risk situations and choosing varieties with effective major gene resistance; for example, varieties with Group D or H resistance in southern New South Wales
  • No fungicides are registered for the control of upper canopy blackleg infection, but the fungicides used to manage sclerotinia at 30 per cent bloom are effective in reducing levels of infection
  • Yield losses to upper canopy blackleg infection can be exacerbated by frost, hail, drought and heat stress.

Winter chill favours progression of blackleg upper canopy infection in canola crops

Prolonged cool conditions have favoured the progression of blackleg Upper Canopy Infection (UCI) in canola crops across south eastern Australia. Oilseeds disease expert Steve Marcroft, of Marcroft Grains Pathology, says the incidence of UCI during 2019 has been widespread.

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What is upper canopy blackleg?

Upper canopy blackleg is very severe in August 2019. Hear from Steve Marcroft on how to diagnose upper canopy blackleg. 

How to control upper canopy blackleg

How to control upper canopy blackleg? Steve Marcroft explains different upper canopy blackleg control options and explains where fungicide application is warranted.

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Canopy infection by blackleg – a new evolution

Farmers in blackleg prone areas of Australia are generally competent in managing the disease in their canola crops. That is until the recent advent of blackleg infection of the upper canopy.

This new way blackleg has developed to attack canola crops is the focus of this podcast featuring Steve Marcroft from Marcroft Pathology.

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The Blackleg Management Guide will help growers and advisers effectively manage canola crops against blackleg infection and determine if there is a high-risk situation and what practices need to change to reduce or prevent yield loss.

The latest information on canola disease resistance ratings are available via the GRDC’s National Variety Trials Portal 

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