Stripe rust identified from the Panhandle | TheFencePost.com

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Stripe rust identified from the Panhandle

This file photo shows a winter wheat plant affected by stripe rust.

Stripe rust has been identified in a winter wheat field in the northern Panhandle, according to Robert M. Harveson, Extension plant pathologist at the Panhandle Research and Extension Center at Scottsbluff, Neb.

"On Tuesday morning, April 18, wheat samples were brought into my lab by a field agent with symptoms consistent with stripe rust," Harveson said. "Small yellowish pustules arranged in linear stripes parallel with the veins were observed on leaves in the lower part of the canopy of several plants."

The infections occurred on only a few leaves of the plants and pustules were very small and difficult to see. Thus it is not a serious problem at this time, but producers should be aware.

The field from which the plants originated was from Sheridan County north of Rushville, which strongly implies that the pathogen overwintered at this location from a crop planted in fall 2016. This also suggests that the pathogen survived over the winter in other fields as well, which will potentially result in additional early infections and economic losses.

"This report is not anything to be panicked about now, but is just an alert," according to Harveson. "We are not recommending spraying fungicides at this point, but it would be a good idea to survey and closely monitor fields right now to determine further incidence and distribution of the disease.

Contact Harveson with any additional reports of this disease at (308) 631-5953 or rharveson2@unl.edu.