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Wheat Diseases

All Wheat Diseases Content

aerial view of South Dakota farm and surrounding land

Crops

During the growing season, SDSU Extension provides weekly production recommendations.

Blades of green wheat in a wheat field.

Scouting Wheat Fields

Scouting is the process of monitoring fields and crops during a growing season. It can provide producers with field specific information on pest pressure and crop injury.

Two, dark green aphids on a bright green leaf.

Aphid Populations Being Observed in Wheat

During the past couple of weeks, reports of aphid populations in wheat fields have slowly been increasing. Typically, the initial aphid populations are observed earlier in the season, but the 2019 spring may have delayed infestations.

Two diseased wheat plants side-by-side. The wheat heads on the left have ergot bodies throughout. The wheat plants on the right are infected with Fusarium head blight.

Assess Your Fields for Ergot and Fusarium Head Blight Before Harvest

The 2019 wheat harvest is well underway in South Dakota, with many acres of winter and much of the spring wheat crop left to harvest. To date, reports on yield and quality have been variable, depending on when the crop was seeded, weather conditions at important growth stages (such as flowering and grain fill) and disease pressure throughout the season.

Weeds growing in a recently harvested winter wheat field.

Winter Wheat Decisions

Winter wheat planting will soon be starting and a number of decisions will have to be made for a successful winter wheat crop, including: the time of planting, the choice of variety to be planted, disease and pest management decisions and crop insurance.

A few wheat plants showing heavy yellowing mosaic symptoms due to Wheat streak mosaic virus.

Wheat Streak Mosaic Disease Developing in Winter Wheat

Although the majority of winter wheat in the state is rated good to excellent in the recent USDA-NASS report, a few winter wheat fields in Central South Dakota have been diagnosed with wheat streak mosaic disease (WSMD) caused by wheat streak mosaic virus (WSMV).

Wheat plants exhibiting symptoms of tan spot and powdery mildew.

Does Early Fungicide at Tillering Result in a Profitable Yield?

Tan spot and powdery mildew pathogens are two residue-borne pathogens that can infect wheat early in the season. These diseases can lead to poor tillering, and their continued development can lead to yield loss.

Three wheat plants exhibiting disease symptoms. From left: Tan spot, powdery mildew, and Barley yellow dwarf.

Winter Wheat Diseases Update: Fungal Diseases and Barley Yellow Dwarf Developing

Tan spot and powdery mildew as well as barley yellow dwarf were found developing at low levels in winter wheat fields scouted the week of May 24, 2020.

Green winter wheat leaf with yellow-orange strips indicative of stripe rust.

Stripe Rust Found in Winter Wheat at Low Severity

Stripe rust was observed in the crop performance trials at the Dakota Lakes Research Farm in Hughes County and at Ideal in Tripp County. At both locations, stripe rust was at a low severity.

Small white cylindrical mites on a wheat leaf.

Wheat Streak Mosaic Virus is Prevented Before Planting Winter Wheat

Wheat streak mosaic disease (WSMD) is one of the important diseases in winter wheat and can lead to severe yield losses.