Prevent White Mold from Spreading
Last Thursday I posted a blog with tips to scout soybean fields for Sclerotia Stem Rot. Sclerotia, which encapsulate and protect the White Mold fungus, can lay dormant for years and then grow when the conditions are suitable. Keeping White Mold out of a field is the best way to prevent it from spreading.
Tips for managing White Mold follow:
- If White Mold is restricted to a portion of the field, that restricted area should be harvested last and independently from the rest of the field.
- Avoid harvesting disease-infested fields before harvesting healthy fields.
- Clean your combine thoroughly after a field with White Mold is harvested.
- Rotations of 2 to 3 years between soybean crops can help reduce the level of the fungus causing White Mold in certain fields.
- Wider row spacing allows air to circulate to the soil surface while the crop is starting to flower. Circulating air promotes a drier soil surface and lower humidity around the base of the plants, which interferes with sclerotia development. However, rows wider than 30 inches may actually increase spore dispersal by allowing more air movement near the soil surface.
- Seed selection is also important. Some soybean brands are better than others at resisting White Mold. Seed dealers provide ratings on the resistance levels, so be sure to check those ratings when making your soybean selections.
To help simply the seed selection process for farmers, Latham® gives the IRONCLAD™ designation to its most defensive soybean products. Each IRONCLAD soybean brand must be Soybean Cyst Nematode resistant and carry an Iron Deficiency Chlorosis rating of 2.2 or better. IRONCLAD brands also must protect against either White Mold or Sudden Death Syndrome with a rating of 2.2 or higher. Furthermore, these products must have strong defensive ratings against Phytophthora Root Rot and Brown Stem Rot.
Latham Hi-Tech Seeds is featuring 15 soybean brands with the IRONCLAD designation in its 2015 seed guide. Be sure to talk to your local Latham® representative about them or call 1-877-GO-LATHAM (1.877.465.2842) for more information!