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Wheat Streak Mosaic Update and Other Causes of Yellow Wheat (05/25/17)

Extension specialists in Kansas, Nebraska and South Dakota have reported a widespread occurrence of wheat streak mosaic (WSM) in winter wheat fields.

Wheat Streak Mosaic Update and Other Causes of Yellow Wheat

Extension specialists in Kansas, Nebraska and South Dakota have reported a widespread occurrence of wheat streak mosaic (WSM) in winter wheat fields. Although it is early in the growing season, very few WSM cases have been reported in North Dakota. Given the warm fall, mild winter and adequate snow cover, the survival of grassy weeds and small grain volunteers was projected to be high increasing the risk for WSM. However, the warm temperatures in February and March followed by freezing temperatures, likely reduced the survival of host plants and the wheat curl mite (vector). Small grains that were seeded into volunteers (Figure 1) or grassy weeds are at greatest risk for the development of WSM. Therefore, it is important to destroy volunteers and grassy weeds for a full two weeks before planting (breaking the green bridge).

Wheat streak mosaic symptoms include stunting, yellowing and streaking of leaves (Figure 2). These symptoms can also be associated with nutrient disorders (ie: nitrogen deficiencies), abiotic injury (i.e.: herbicides) and environmental stressors (i.e.: water). Positive identification of the viruses (Wheat streak mosaic virus, Wheat mosaic virus and Triticum mosaic virus) responsible for WSM is accomplished with laboratory testing offered at the NDSU Plant Diagnostic Lab.

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Andrew Friskop

Extension Plant Pathology, Cereal Crops

 

 Ryan Buetow

Area Extension Specialist/Cropping Systems

NDSU Dickinson Research Extension Center

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