Seed Lab Report

Fusarium in Wheat

Seed Lab Report by Steve Beals, RST - Seed Lab Director

Fusarium Prevalent in the 2019 Wheat Production
2019 has proven to be a challenge this year with many of the cereal crops that have been sent into the seed lab for germination testing showing significant amounts of Fusarium. The severity of infection varies field by field indicating that this year’s wet weather was a factor. We have found that seed treatment has been beneficial for some seed lots and that planting in sand has helped improve the germination. However, with the sand germination, we do not record Abnormal seedlings (they are included with dead seed), and we do not give a fusarium reading for the sample. The seed treatment that we have been using in the lab, unless we have a specific request, has been Mertect 340-F (ia. Thiabendazole). Attached is a chart that shows the 2019 Wheat germination averages for the regions of the state.

Read more: Fusarium in Wheat

No "Cure-All"

Seed Lab Report by Steve Beals, RST – Seed Lab Director

Germination results for the 2018 seed corn crop were excellent and in the range that we have been seeing over the past few years. Soybean germination results showed a significant amount of disease pressure (Phomopsis) due to the 2018 harvest conditions. Seed producers turned to fungicide seed treatments looking for a cure. As a result of testing various fungicide products and utilizing several testing methods, no "cure-all" was identified. Determining the best course of action was done on a lot by lot, case by case, basis. In some cases, where fungi were controlled by seed treatments, signs of mechanical damage were revealed as an additional complication. This year's soybean seed quality challenges prompted Prairie Farmer Magazine to contact me for an interview to discuss the issues that we had seen in the lab. I was also contacted by RFD-TV for an interview which aired on Wednesday, February 6. I was truly honored to be interviewed and to have the opportunity to promote the IL Crop Improvement Seed Laboratory.

Read more: No "Cure-All"

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