Grain growers are being urged to use the new cereal and pulse disease guides when planning for the control of crop diseases this season.
The guides – put together by Agriculture Victoria and supported by the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) – provide the latest disease resistance ratings to assist with disease management planning.
“The disease ratings provide information on how a range of different cereal and pulse varieties will perform in the presence of disease,” Agriculture Victoria Senior Research Scientist Grant Hollaway said.
“The ratings are developed nationally and released in February providing the most up to date information,” Dr Hollaway said.
“Resistant varieties are an important part of a proactive disease management strategy.
“Where varieties have resistance to the important diseases they may not require or only require minimal additional fungicide protection.
“For diseases such as stripe rust, for example, a variety that does not have adequate resistance can suffer yield losses of more than 50 per cent.
“The ratings provided in the pulse and cereal disease guides are based on an understanding of the diseases present in Victoria and on data collected from plant pathologists working across Australia with support from the GRDC.
“The ratings provided in these guides are used by farmers when selecting new varieties and when they need to understand the disease risk in their varieties.”
Research Scientist Josh Fanning said in addition to the ratings, these guides provide some important information about key disease issues and advice for their management in 2019.
“In both guides growers are warned not to be complacent about disease management following a dry season,” Dr Fanning said.
“Should conditions be favorable for diseases they can develop quickly.”