Impact of fungicide application and host genotype on susceptibility of brassica napus to sclerotinia stem rot across the south-western australian grain belt: A genotype × environment × management study
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© 2021 The Authors. Published by MDPI Publishing.
Sclerotinia stem rot (SSR), caused by the necrotroph Sclerotinia sclerotiorum Lib. (de Bary), is a major disease of canola in Australia, greatly reducing yields in high infection years. This study investigated genotype by environment by management interactions at 25 sites across the south-west Australian grainbelt from 2017 to 2020. Up to 10 canola varieties were grown each year with +/− fungicide application at 30% flowering. Disease incidence was low, with less than 20% infection recorded across most sites. Most variation in yield occurred between sites, rather than by management or variety, due to the environmental differences between the sites. Petal assays were found to be a poor indicator of later disease severity, suggesting the winter growing season in south-west Australia does not have reliable conducive conditions for disease development following petal drop in canola. The Additive Main Effects and Multiplicative Interaction model (AMMI) indicated that the open-pollinated varieties were broadly adapted and stable when fungicide was applied but became unstable with no fungicide, indicating SSR has a significant impact on yield when disease incidence is higher. This study highlights that further research is necessary to determine disease thresholds that lead to significant yield loss.
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