Pulse growers advised to keep a line of sight on blight

Author: Sharon Watt | Date: 22 Jun 2016

SARDI principal research scientist Dr Jenny Davidson says it will be important to monitor this year’s pulse crops for the breakdown of resistance to Ascochyta blight. Photo: Sandy Kimber, Hart Field-site Group

Pulse growers are advised to monitor this year’s crops for the breakdown of resistance to Ascochyta blight and report any anomalies to the South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI*).

SARDI principal research scientist Dr Jenny Davidson says monitoring of Ascochyta blight last year confirmed the loss of resistance in Nipper lentils across South Australia and Victoria, and the loss of resistance in Farah faba beans and partial loss of resistance in PBA Rana faba beans in the Mid North of SA.

Dr Davidson, whose research into pulse diseases is supported by the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC), said these cultivars would now require fungicide protection, particularly against pod and seed infection in wet springs.

“Intense cropping of a single dominant cultivar risks the loss of further resistance genes in these crops,” Dr Davidson said. “Growers need to be very careful about the intensity of their cropping rotations.”

Ascochyta blight was observed in Genesis™090 chickpeas in SA and Victoria last year and so early foliar fungicides will be necessary to prevent yield loss in this variety.

“In controlled conditions, Genesis™079, Ambar and Neelam  demonstrated resistance to these new isolates, although this result needs to be confirmed in field trials.”

Speaking at GRDC Grains Research Updates, Dr Davidson encouraged growers and advisers to closely monitor this year’s crops for Ascochyta blight.

“If you see a breakdown in resistance, let us know straight away,” she said     

Growers and advisers can report observations to Dr Davidson by phone on 08 8303 9389 or email jenny.davidson@sa.gov.au.

The GRDC offers numerous publications and resources on pulse diseases. These are available via www.grdc.com.au/bookshop.

* SARDI is a division of Primary Industries and Regions South Australia (PIRSA).

For Interviews

Rob Johnson, Communications Adviser, SARDI

0423 292 867


Sharon Watt, Porter Novelli

0409 675 100

Region South