A survey of wheat in southeast Nebraska found diseases generally absent or at very low levels, mainly due to recent dry conditions. Continued scouting for foliar diseases is recommended, especially in areas that receive rainfall and where the wheat crop has not yet headed.
To differentiate sulfur deficiency from nitrogen deficiency in wheat, look for field patterns. Symptoms of yellowing limited to certain areas is more typical of sulfur deficiency. In addition, symptoms of sulfur deficiency are more conspicuous when soil temperatures are cold as in early spring.
No diseases were found during a survey of wheat fields in south central and southeast Nebraska this week, but growers are urged to continue scouting as recent rains may create conditions favorable to disease development.
Management of foliar fungal disease is achieved in many of our field crops by applying fungicides. Over the past several years, there have been examples of misidentification of some bacterial diseases that are easily confused for fungal diseases in field crops.
With the predicted return to more normal temperatures, it's time to get into wheat fields and start scouting. Stripe rust has already been reported in southeastern Kansas and is expected to move northward. Included is a table of fungicide efficacy ratings for disease management in wheat.
What factors contribute to diseases in wheat and what management steps can help deter wheat disease problems. Also addressed is how to use integrated pest management to reduce threats that could rob yields.