Seed Treatment
With the 2017 growing season upon us, here’s a look at the latest seed treatments, foliar fungicides and label updates. Product information is provided to Top Crop Manager by the manufacturers.
Guelph, ON – Bayer has announced the launch of Trilex EverGol SHIELD fungicide and insecticide seed treatment, in a convenient package that offers complete disease and insect protection against the expanding presence of pea leaf weevil and wireworms for pulse growers in Western Canada.

Trilex EverGol SHIELD is ideal for on-farm treating or for smaller batches towards the end of the treating season, and combines penflufen (Group 7), trifloxystrobin (Group 11) and metalaxyl (Group 4) with Stress Shield insecticide seed treatment (Group 4) that together provide exceptional seed- and soilborne disease protection against Rhizoctonia, Ascochyta, Pythium, Fusarium and Botrytis.

Trilex EverGol SHIELD offers exceptional germination when compared to untreated seed, helping to promote a high-performing root system that supports optimal access to water and nutrients in the development phase.

The concentrated formulation allows growers the flexibility to decrease water volume when adding Stress Shield, micronutrients and/or inoculants. This extra control allows for an optimized application volume and uniform coverage, which helps prevent product overload, allows for low seed moisture content and makes for easier flow through equipment.

For more information visit
Guelph, ON – Bayer has announced that their ILeVO seed treatment is now approved for use in soybeans with the additional label claim of nematode suppression. Originally released as the first seed treatment available for soybean growers to protect against sudden death syndrome (SDS), the expansion provides growers with another valuable tool in suppressing soybean cyst nematodes (SCN) and root lesion nematodes.

SCN in particular is difficult to see and diagnose, and can reduce soybean yields up to 30 per cent even without visual symptoms. Populations of SCN are on the rise, and even resistant varieties of soybeans are becoming more susceptible. In Ontario, where SCN is more widespread, estimated losses due to SCN range from $10-30 million annually.

In 2015 and 2016, Ontario field trials demonstrated that ILeVO offered an average yield benefit of 3.6 bu/acre in nematode pressure areas. This is further supported by 338 variety locations run by universities from 2011-2016 in the United States and Canada, which showed a yield benefit of 4.7 bu/acre over non ILeVO treatments.

For more information visit
Agnition announced today that the Canadian Food Inspection Agency has granted registration for two products in Canada, Generate for crops and Commence for wheat seed treatment. Both products will be available to Canadian farmers for the 2017 growing season.
Bayer has launched ILeVO seed treatment, the first soybean seed treatment registered for Sudden Death Syndrome (SDS) in Canada. 

SDS is caused by Fusarium virguliforme. This fungal pathogen overwinters on crop residue and is occurring more frequently in fields across Ontario. Difficult to identify and often misdiagnosed, the disease results in average annual yield loss of about 20 per cent, but can cause losses of up to 60 per cent in a growing season, according to a press release from Bayer. To date, there have been no seed treatment solutions available for SDS in Canada. 

ILeVO has activity on the Fusarium virguliforme fungus. The company says the effectiveness of the product has been demonstrated through field trials in the U.S. and Canada over the past five years, including third-party trials with OMAFRA and the University of Guelph. 

A feature unique to ILeVO which signals a successful application is the “halo effect,” which is often visible on the edges of the cotyledons of a treated plant. 

For more information regarding ILeVO, growers are encouraged to talk to their local seed companies and retailers or visit

DuPont and Monsanto will offer DuPont Lumivia insecticide seed treatment under the Acceleron brand in Eastern Canada for the 2017 sales season.

Lumivia insecticide seed treatment, part of the DuPont Lumigen seed sense portfolio, is the first insecticide seed treatment technology in Canada using chlorantraniliprole, a reduced-risk active ingredient that will give growers a tool to help control damage caused by a broad spectrum of pests.

Lumivia is a premium insecticide seed treatment that works systemically to translocate the active ingredient from the seed to the roots and developing stalk and leaves throughout seedling development. It delivers protection against key early season pests including wireworm, seed corn maggot (suppression only), black cutworms and armyworm that can cause devastating damage to a corn crop. According to DuPont, Lumivia insecticide seed treatment provides immediate and long-lasting protection of corn seeds and seedlings, which translates to uniform, healthy stands and increased yield potential through improved early season vigor.

Lumivia is available on DEKALB brand corn seed for the 2017 growing season as part of the Acceleron Seed Applied Solutions offerings in Eastern Canada.

There are four glyphosate-resistant weeds in Ontario. Glyphosate-resistant giant ragweed was first found in 2008, and is now found in the six southwestern counties in Ontario – Essex, Kent, Lambton, Elgin, Middlesex and Huron – as well as Lennox and Addington county.

The Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) in Canada has granted approval for registration of DuPont Lumivia insecticide seed treatment for corn growers in Ontario and Quebec 

Lumivia is a new seed treatment product for corn that delivers broad spectrum pest protection and efficacy. It protects corn against early-season, below-ground insect pests such as wireworms and seed corn maggots, as well as foliage feeders including cutworms and armyworms, according to a company press release. Lumivia is expected to be commercially available for the 2017 growing season.

In Canada, Lumivia is the first insecticide seed treatment technology containing DuPont's active ingredient DuPont Rynaxypyr, aGroup 28, anthranilic diamide insecticide, the press release adds. It is meant to support uniform, healthy stand establishment and early vigor for maximum yield potential. 


Feb. 8, 2016, Ontario – The University of Guelph's Ridgetown Campus is offering integrated pest management training for growers.

Anyone needing to buy and use neonicotinoid-treated corn or soybean seed must complete integrated pest management training and become certified, among other requirements, starting Aug. 31, 2016. Once completed, certification is valid for five years and a certified person can supervise up to seven people to help with planting. The course is free of charge if successfully completed by Aug 31, 2016.

The course covers topics such as IPM principles including corn and soybean pest identification, planting best management practices, the new regulatory requirements regarding Class 12 pesticides and pollinator protection from neonicotinoid exposure. The courses are taught by experienced instructors, many of whom are farmers. Courses take half a day in class, or over two days online where participants enjoy the convenience of learning at their own pace.

To register for one of the more than 600 courses offered in English or French across the province in the next few months, sign-up online at or call 1-866-225-9020.


Feb. 2, 2016, Ontario – With the 2016 growing season approaching, it is a good time to review what the requirements are for using Class 12 pesticides (neonic-treated corn and soybean seeds) in Ontario. Tracey Baute offers a to-do list for anyone wanting to purchase and plant neonic corn or soybean seed in Ontario. | READ MORE

Apr. 20, 2015 - An Alberta pathologist says cereal rusts could be a major problem in the province this year.

"Stripe rust alerts have already been issued in Oregon and Montana," says Mike Harding, plant pathologist, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development at Brooks. "Leaf rust on winter wheat in southern Alberta has also been reported. It would be wise to scout winter wheat crops regularly for rusts as the wind trajectories and weather conditions are now putting southern Alberta cereal producers at risk for these diseases."

For more information on stripe rust resistance ratings, and other variety information, download Agri-Facts: Varieties of Cereal and Oilseed Crops for Alberta, and/or contact the Alberta Ag-Info Centre at 310-FARM (3276).



Syngenta Canada Inc. has announced the registration and launch of Vibrance Quattro seed treatment, a Seedcare product that brings together four fungicide active ingredients to protect cereal crops against a wide range of seed- and soil-borne diseases.

For use on barley, oats, rye, triticale, winter wheat and spring wheat, Vibrance Quattro combines difenoconazole (Group 3), metalaxyl-M (Group 4), sedaxane (Group 7) and fludioxonil (Group 12) to offer growers a convenient way to protect cereal seed and seedlings from seed rots caused by Fusarium, Pythium, Rhizoctonia, Penicllium and Aspergillus spp., as well as seedling blight, root rot and damping off. Vibrance Quattro delivers improved Fusarium and Rhizoctonia control in all cereal crops and enhanced control of true loose smut in barley.

Its ready-to-apply formulation allows Vibrance Quattro to be applied on-farm and does not require the use of a closed treating system. To allow for optimal treatment flexibility, Syngenta will make the product available in a range of pack sizes.



Aug. 7, 2014 – Disease surveys show an increase in blackleg incidence across the Prairies over the past few years. Canola growers may need to redeploy a more integrated approach to manage the disease.

"After 15 to 20 years of good control from resistant varieties alone, growers may have to implement other practices to protect canola yields and preserve the efficacy of genetic resistance on some fields," says Clint Jurke, agronomy specialist for the Canola Council of Canada (CCC). "Growers and agronomists who may have forgotten what the disease looks like and how to manage it will have to rebuild their knowledge and experience base."

The CCC launched a new video this week with vivid images to help growers understand and identify the disease. It explains how genetic resistance works, and how growing varieties with the same type of resistance in a short rotation increases the selection pressure for blackleg races that can overcome specific resistance genes.

"The video breaks new ground," Jurke says. "It gives a microscopic view of how the pathogen produces disease, which is something we have not seen in video form before, and it explains the difficult concept of resistance breakdown." View Blackleg Disease and Resistance Management.

Video inspires scouting

The video arms growers and agronomists with the understanding of the blackleg disease cycle and encourages them to assess the level of blackleg in this year's canola crop. Pre-harvest scouting is an important step as growers need to be vigilant to ensure the disease is not becoming established in the field and if it is present, whether it is increasing in severity.

"This is the easiest time of year to identify the disease," Jurke says. "By checking the average severity in a field, growers can determine whether their current management is working or whether they need to up their game."

To scout, visit canola fields in the week or two before swathing or straight cutting. Pull up a few random plants and clip the stem just below ground level. Look for black discolouration of the cross section. A rating of "0" means no blackleg stem discolouration. A rating of "5" means the stem is completely discoloured and blackleg has killed the plant. A wedge of black that covers 26-50 percent of the cross section is considered a "2" on the severity scale.

Repeat this at a few sites within the field. If average severity is 1.5 or more, blackleg races in that field are likely starting to overcome the genetic resistance in that particular variety. Rotating varieties to bring a mix of blackleg resistance genes to the field over time can help prevent or delay the breakdown of resistance.

For more scouting tips, watch the CCC's "Pre-Harvest Disease Scouting" video at

A key component of integrated pest management (IPM) of blackleg is to combine agronomic best practices and stewardship of blackleg resistance, if the disease is present in the field. "A two- to three-year break from canola on a high-risk field along with genetic resistance is recommended," says Ralph Lange, plant pathologist with Alberta Innovates. "In that time, most of the infected canola residue will have decomposed, reducing the spores available to infect the next canola crop."

Controlling volunteer canola and other Brassica weeds in all crops in the rotation will also prevent blackleg buildup, Lange adds.

Applying fungicides could also help — although research is ongoing to determine the best methods. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada found no benefit to tillage or burning stubble for blackleg management.

The Canola Council of Canada is a full value chain organization representing canola growers, value added processors, life science companies and exporters.



As many growers know, resistant varieties are a critical tool for managing clubroot, a devastating canola disease. So Alberta researchers are assessing the pathogen’s ability to erode the effectiveness of the resistance genes and developing guidance to help growers protect this valuable tool.

Clubroot is caused by the soil-borne pathogen Plasmodiophora brassicae. It infects the roots of crops in the Brassica genus, such as canola and cole crops. Galls form on the roots, preventing water and nutrients from getting to the rest of the plant. When the galls decay, they leave millions of resting spores in the soil. Those spores can survive for up to about 20 years, waiting and ready to infect the next Brassica host that grows in the field.

Although the existing clubroot-resistant canolas are currently working very well, the researchers were concerned about the pathogen’s ability to fight back.

“We knew generally from other pathogens and their hosts that pathogens can evolve in response to the selection pressure that is imposed by growing resistant varieties of the host crops. And specifically, we knew of instances involving clubroot, for instance with oilseed rape in Europe and cruciferous vegetables in the U.S., where the resistance had eroded or in some cases broken down after repeated cropping of a resistant variety in a particular piece of land,” explains Dr. Stephen Strelkov of the University of Alberta.

So Strelkov and his lab conducted two greenhouse experiments to investigate this issue, collaborating with Dr. Kelly Turkington of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) and Dr. Sheau-Fang Hwang of Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development (ARD) on these and other ongoing experiments.

“In the first experiment, we wanted to assess the effect of multiple infection cycles on the clubroot pathogen’s ability to cause disease. So we took a population and a single-spore isolate of pathotype 3 and inoculated a soil potting mix,” says Strelkov. Clubroot pathotypes, or strains, are identified based on their ability to cause disease in a standardized set of hosts. Pathotypes in Alberta include pathotypes 2, 3, 5, 6 and 8. Pathotype 3, a very virulent type, is the most common pathotype in canola crops in the province.

In the inoculated potting mix, the researchers planted a selection of resistant (R), moderately resistant (MR) and susceptible (S) hosts. These included: three Argentine canola cultivars (Brassica napus) (R, MR and S), two Polish canola cultivars (Brassica rapa) (R and R), a kale cultivar (Brassica oleracea) (MR), and a Chinese cabbage cultivar (Brassica rapa) (S).

They grew 16 seedlings of each host, with one seedling per pot, in a replicated experiment. After six weeks, they pulled the plants out of the soil and checked the roots for clubroot galls. They rated the disease level in the roots, and if there were any galls, they harvested the spores and placed them back in the same pot in the same soil. Then they grew a new set of 16 seedlings from the same host in the same pots with the same soil. They repeated this process for five cycles for each host.

In some of the cultivars, the disease level didn’t change very much from cycle to cycle. But in other cultivars, the resistance was significantly eroded (see Fig. 1).

 Rotate clubroot fig 1 march14

Strelkov notes, “In some cases, we found that repeated cropping could erode the effectiveness of the resistance. For instance some varieties that had been moderately resistant became susceptible or highly susceptible. And it usually didn’t take very long – maybe one or two cycles; so they went from a disease severity of around 40 per cent to about 90 or 100 per cent after a couple of cycles. And a [Brassica napus] resistant cultivar went from a disease severity of about five or six per cent to about 40 per cent.”

The main aim of the second experiment was to see whether the commercial canola cultivars grown on the Prairies carry the same or different sources of resistance. The particular set of genes a company uses for clubroot resistance in its cultivars is not public information; it’s the company’s proprietary information. But knowing whether or not cultivars have different genes for resistance could help growers to manage clubroot by rotating cultivars with different resistance sources.

For this experiment, the researchers harvested the pathogen populations that had been cycled with the cultivars in the first experiment. They used those populations to inoculate four resistant canola cultivars from two other companies. And then they evaluated the level of disease in those four cultivars.

“If two cultivars have the same source of resistance, then the pathogen populations that are cycled in one cultivar should show increased infectivity on the other cultivar,” explains Strelkov. “But for the cultivars we tested, the pathogens weren’t cross-infective. It’s preliminary data, but maybe, hopefully, there are at least some different sources of resistance out there.”

Another positive sign from these experiments is that the resistance in the two Polish canola cultivars was not eroded over the five cycles. Strelkov says, “That could be material for breeders to try to see if they could incorporate that resistance into Brassica napus types because [the Brassica rapa types] certainly seemed to withstand infection more than the Brassica napus cultivars we tested.”

Strelkov and his colleagues are continuing their studies on clubroot resistance. One of their current projects is using another approach to explore whether the different canola cultivars may have some different resistance genes.

“We’re finding that some resistant cultivars appear to have a different profile of how the pathogen proliferates inside [the roots], not only how much it proliferates but also when it proliferates and so on,” he explains. “So we’re comparing [the pathogen proliferation profiles] in the different resistant types and combining that with [examination of the tissues] to look at the infection process. This could provide information as to whether the same resistance mechanisms may be at play or if different ones may be involved.”

Implications for canola production
“In our experiment, we saw that growing the same resistance source twice in a row under high disease pressure already produced some pathogen strains that were causing high levels of the disease. So I think it wouldn’t take very long for this to happen under field conditions if a farmer were continuously growing the same resistance source back to back for maybe three years in a row,” notes Strelkov.

“That’s what was seen in the U.S. with vegetables and in the U.K. [with oilseed rape]. When they grew the same resistance source for about three years in a row, they started to see increased disease levels.”

According to Strelkov, the best option for resistance stewardship is crop rotation. In particular, growers should try to avoid canola-on-canola and very short canola rotations.  

As an additional tool to protect resistance, rotating resistant cultivars from the different companies may help. “If you always grow the same cultivar, then you know for sure that it carries the same resistance genes. But if you grow different cultivars, at least there is some potential that there are some different resistance genes,” he says.

Strelkov emphasizes, “Clubroot management is all built around deployment of genetically resistant cultivars. If we abuse the resistance by cropping in extremely short rotations, over and over, then the resistance could become less effective. The companies of course will try to find other sources of resistance but it will become harder.

“Resistance is such an important tool, and we don’t want to lose it. Taking care of the resistance [through crop rotation] is crucial to keep our main tool for managing clubroot.”



R-rated blackleg resistance used to be the cornerstone for managing blackleg in canola, but is it enough now? Blackleg continues to be detected in disease surveys across the Prairies, with 2012 showing the highest levels in recent years and 2013 also causing concern. Industry and growers are being encouraged to build risk management approaches into their systems when dealing with blackleg to keep the Canadian canola industry profitable and resilient.

“Recently, some agronomists are finding fields where farmers were growing R-rated blackleg varieties that had higher than expected levels of blackleg disease,” says Clint Jurke, agronomy specialist with the Canola Council of Canada (CCC). “With tighter crop rotations, this is a risk that needs to be addressed by growers and industry. It is also the motivation for CCC initiating discussions with industry to try to come up with a better way of informing growers to make more strategic blackleg management decisions.”

Current research, led by Dr. Dilantha Fernando at the University of Manitoba and Dr. Gary Peng with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) in Saskatoon, is trying to characterize resistance genes in many of the commercial canola varieties. “This research work is crucial for our basic understanding of how much genetic variability we have in the resistance genes currently being used,” explains Jurke. “So far, the initial research data shows that the majority of varieties are relying on one resistance gene, Rlm3. As a result, the pathogen has responded accordingly and races are being selected that are virulent against that type of resistance.”

This may be a risk to the canola industry, and one that is going to require an industry strategy. “We may need to develop a better strategy of how we communicate blackleg risk and perhaps how we identify resistance in our varieties so growers can make better informed choices,” says Jurke. “Once canola growers start selecting for some of these more aggressive, more virulent races on a regular basis, and as these races become more dominant, then our current resistance strategy as a whole becomes compromised. We are in the early stages of seeing blackleg troubles, but we have the opportunity right now by tweaking our existing systems to stay ahead of blackleg in Canada. We don’t want to create a situation where blackleg is a huge problem for the entire industry such as it was in the 1980s and ’90s in Canada.”

Industry is beginning to see the need in the marketplace for more diversity in resistance in canola varieties. Some companies are developing varieties with more than one type of resistance in the germplasm. “We are looking forward to discussions with industry to address these needs, and to come out with a model on how to manage the risks,” notes Jurke. “In the meantime, we are working with growers to take a risk management approach to dealing with blackleg in their rotations.”

blackleg chart tcwnov13

Blackleg risk assessment and management
The CCC has developed a risk matrix that helps growers assess strategies and implement low-risk decisions for blackleg management (see chart above). Growers are encouraged to conduct a risk management assessment and to implement good management practices when developing a risk management strategy. Risks are listed in terms of importance, with rotation being most important. If growers follow a tight rotation, then using other low-risk measures helps reduce the overall risk.

Jurke explains that the risk management approach has three main levels of control: scouting, crop rotations and variety rotations. Scouting is the first step and growers need to identify whether or not they have any fields where blackleg levels are high. Learning to identify blackleg properly and scout for the disease at the end of the season is important.

Crop rotation is the second important control strategy, and long-term crop rotations are ideal and especially recommended where blackleg levels are high. Any field where more than 50 per cent of the stems are infected with blackleg is a field of concern. “If growers have a field where blackleg levels are high, then they should move that field into a long-term crop rotation (four years) strategy,” says Jurke. “This is especially important for growers using tight rotations. Although growers might not have experienced a yield loss if the severity is low, certainly the next time they grow that same variety in that field, it could be epidemic proportions.”

It takes two to three years for blackleg-infected canola stubble to decompose to the point where infection risk to the next crop is significantly reduced. The best strategy is to move these fields with high levels of blackleg infection into a long-term crop rotation, but if that is difficult financially then growers should move to the third level of control or variety rotation.

Variety rotation is important, and although there isn’t a listing available in Canada, the recommendation is for growers to not use the same variety on the same field in a tight rotation. “If growers really like variety ‘X’ but had some blackleg in it and the field has more than 50 per cent of the stems infected, then choose variety ‘Y’ from the same company or try a new variety from a different company,” recommends Jurke. “In a tight rotation it is also a good idea to rotate between Roundup Ready and Liberty Link systems, which is recommended for volunteer control and weed resistance management issues.”

Growers and industry need to continue to work together to develop a proactive risk management approach to blackleg. Australia already categorizes canola varieties based on specific blackleg resistance genes. The CCC is working together with industry and growers to develop blackleg management strategies, which may include a new variety rotation scheme that is appropriate for Canada.

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