By Top Crop Manager
Sept. 20, 2013 - Manitoba is no longer free of clubroot disease.
Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Initiatives (MAFRI) says that tests on plants from two unrelated fields, tested this month and last, showed symptoms of clubroot galls on their roots. Further testing has resulted in a positive clubroot DNA analysis of both plant samples.
The discovery of clubroot symptoms in Manitoba had been considered likely, as clubroot DNA had been confirmed previously in soil samples unrelated to these fields, says MAFRI in a news release.
Workshops to discuss reduction of pest movement and bio‑security for crop producers will be delivered by the department in the upcoming months.
Proper equipment cleaning, specifically to reduce the movement of soil on field equipment, is key to reducing the risk of spreading this soil-borne disease. The use of clubroot-resistant crop varieties, proper crop rotation and good weed management of alternate hosts will help prevent heavier infestations from developing within a field where a disease may already be present at undetected levels.
Clubroot can cause economic yield losses in host crops including canola. The disease survives in soil as hardy, resting spores, with a half-life of four years, but it has the capacity to survive up to 20 years. Once established in a field, clubroot requires long-term management.