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Wheat Diseases

All Wheat Diseases Content

wheat field


The SDSU Extension team provides unbiased, research-based information to help wheat growers make decisions to improve yields and profits.

aerial view of South Dakota farm and surrounding land


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

Map showing the risk of Fusarium head blight with green equaling no risk, yellow equaling moderate risk, and red equaling high risk. Much of the eastern half of South Dakota is red.

The Fusarium Head Blight Prediction Tool

The Fusarium head blight prediction tool, available through Penn State University and Mesonet at SDState, uses weather variables to predict the risk for Fusarium head blight in wheat.

A wheat field that is bright yellow due to infection of Wheat streak mosaic virus.

Pre-Plant Wheat Streak Mosaic Disease Management Strategies

Drought conditions tend to promote high wheat curl mite populations. Wheat streak mosaic virus and other viruses transmitted by wheat curl mites are best managed through cultural practices performed before planting.

A wheat field that is bright yellow due to infection of Wheat streak mosaic virus.

Wheat Streak Mosaic of Wheat

Fact sheet about symptoms, disease cycle, risk factors and management of Wheat streak mosaic disease

Yellow wheat with grey colored wheat heads.

Sooty Mold: A Saprophytic Fungi Observed in Wheat

While out crop scouting, sooty mold was observed in some South Dakota wheat fields. Sooty mold is a saprophyte, which can be easily mistaken for a disease caused by plant pathogens.

From left: Wheat plants killed by common root rot. Wheat plants with bleached heads due to Take-all disease. Bleached wheat heads due to stem maggot feeding.

Differentiating Between Wheat Head Diseases and Disorders

Several diseases and disorders can develop in wheat heads. Learn the symptoms of several common disease and insect issues being observed in South Dakota wheat this growing season.

A wheat head showing the start of the flowering period. This growth stage is the best time to apply a fungicide to manage Fusarium head blight.

Use Fusarium Head Blight Risk Prediction Tools for Better Disease Management

Winter wheat has reached the flowering growth stage, which is a time of high risk for Fusarium head blight. By using disease prediction tools correctly, a producer can protect wheat from infection by applying a timely fungicide when the tools show moderate to high risk.

Wheat blade with strip rust symptoms.

Stripe Rust Starting To Develop in Winter Wheat

Stripe rust was found in a few winter wheat fields scouted this week. The presence of a few plants with stripe rust indicates there is inoculum of this pathogen in the state.

Wheat tillers with lower leaves covered with tan-brown lesions. The ground beneath has wheat stubble from previous wheat crop.

Scout for Tan Spot in Winter Wheat

Tan spot was observed in a few winter wheat fields scouted recently. It is important to scout winter wheat for tan spot and other early diseases developing before deciding to apply an early-season fungicide tank mixed with herbicide.