Misdiagnosis of phony peach disease could have costly impact for peach growers

By Clint Thompson, University of Georgia

University of Georgia plant pathologist Phil Brannen is concerned that Georgia peach growers can’t tell the difference between phony peach disease and weevil or nematode damage. A consequence could be that farmers unnecessarily destroy trees and potential fruit.

Phony peach disease, nematodes and weevil damage stunt tree growth, but farmers take different management steps to treat the problems. Continue reading

Variety choice more important than chemicals when it comes to nematodes

In Delta Farm Press

Unlike pigweeds or plant bugs, nematodes are an out-of-sight, out-of-mind pest. Left untreated, however, this parasitic organism in the roots of a cotton plant can substantially reduce cotton yield. Resistant cotton varieties are becoming more critical in combatting this pest.

In west Texas, variety choice is more important than chemical control of nematodes because variety response is more consistent year after year than chemical response, according to Terry Wheeler, Texas A&M University plant pathologist. “Root-knot nematode occurs in about 40 percent of our cotton acreage, and reniform occurs in less than 1 percent. Our resistant cotton varieties are resistant to root-knot. Continue reading

Root knot nematode is a real problem for peanuts

In Southeast Farm Press

Rome Ethredge, Contributing writer

I remember one year a grower was going to plant peanuts in a small field that had been in pasture for over 15 years. He said the last time he had peanuts there he had noticed some nematode damage at harvest time. We thought that with the good rotation, he shouldn’t have a problem. We were wrong.

The peanut root-knot nematode (Meloidogyne arenaria) is a force to be reckoned with and caused yield limiting damage again after all those years since we used no nematicide or resistant variety. Continue reading

Disease resistance more important than yield potential, says Georgia specialist

In Southeast Farm Press

By Bob Kemerait, University of Georgia

It is a serious mistake in farming to choose high-yielding, susceptible crop varieties without carefully considering the benefits of resistant varieties to protect yield and reduce pathogen populations in fields. Entering 2016, growers have the opportunity to select seed and varieties that will help reduce and, in some cases, nearly eliminate threat from diseases and nematodes.

I have observed times where losses to diseases and nematodes in a field were directly linked to a decision to plant susceptible varieties when resistant varieties were available.

This article includes a photo gallery.

What to do now to reduce nematode and disease problems this spring

In Southeast Farm Press

By Bob Kemerait, University of Georgia plant pathologist

Winter months are for many farmers the “off season” for row crop disease management.  This occurs not only because cotton, corn, soybeans, peanuts and most other agronomic crops are out of the field, but also because cold weather and soil temperatures affect the pathogens or disease-causing agents.

Perhaps of greatest interest to growers is the survival of plant-parasitic nematodes, such as the southern root-knot nematodes affecting cotton, corn and soybeans, the renifom nematodes affecting soybeans and cotton and the peanut root-knot nematode.  These nematodes cause significant damage to southern row crops; all feed exclusively on living hosts.  Continue reading

Keep a watch out for foliar diseases this summer

In Delta Farm Press

A wet planting season pushed some growers to get soybeans and other crops in the ground.

And if excessive rainfall continues, farmers should be prepared for the threat of more mid- and late-summer disease pressure, says a University of Arkansas Extension plant pathologist.

Continue reading

How to manage nematodes in cotton and soybeans

In Delta Farm Press

By Charles Overstreet, LSU AgCenter

Louisiana has historically experienced losses due to plant-parasitic nematodes in cotton and soybean every year. Some years these losses can be severe and other years fairly minor. The greatest losses occur in years when additional stresses occur during the growing season with drought a primary contributor.

The two major nematodes of both cotton and soybean are the Southern root-knot and reniform nematodes.

Continue reading