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The impact of fusarium crown rot of wheat in Australia

Hollaway, G., Evans, M., McKay, A., Murray, G., Brennan, J., Hüberli, D. and Simpfendorfer, S. (2022) The impact of fusarium crown rot of wheat in Australia. In: 8th International Cereal Nematodes Symposium, 26 - 29 September, Abant, Turkey



During the past 20 to 30 years, Fusarium crown rot (FCR, caused by Fusarium pseudograminearum and/or F. culmorum) has become one of the most important diseases of wheat crops in Australia. As a stubble borne disease of cereals and grasses its prevalence has increased with the widespread adoption of stubble retention cropping practices and intensification of cereals in the cropping system. A recent study of the economic impact of FCR in Australia, based on inoculum levels in 5,993 fields (2015 to 2017) determined using qPCR molecular analysis (PREDICTA®B), estimated average annual losses of 6% (A$404 million) with losses of 8-10% possible across the regions. These losses were estimated using the negative relationship between pre-sowing inoculum density in the field and grain yield in seasons with hot and/or dry conditions during grain filling; with yield loss often not measured in seasons with a wetter and cooler seasonal finish. Australian growers can use PREDICTA®B testing commercially to identify fields at risk of FCR infection to plan rotations to minimise loss from this disease.

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