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Sclerotinia - Peas

Sclerotinia sclerotiorum

Pathogen

Fungus

Hosts

Peas, oilseed rape, potatoes, carrots, lettuce, beans and other vegetable crops.

Symptoms

A white fungal growth develops from leaf or stem spots and hard, black resting bodies (sclerotia) form in the stem cavity. Infected stems have a conspicuous 'bleached' appearance.

Development

Soil-borne sclerotia germinate to form apothecia (small trumpet-like structures) which release air-borne ascospores. In the presence of surface moisture these spores germinate on senescing flowers which have dropped and attached to the lower leaves. The spores can also directly infect via plant wounds or damage caused by pests or by machinery. After establishing the mycelium moves into the leaves and stem of the host plant. Sclerotia subsequently develop in the infected stem cavities are are realeased into the soil when the weakened stems collapse.

Favourable Factors

Warm, wet conditions and proximity to other susceptible brassica or legume crops.

Importance

Stems collapse, yield losses and possible rejection by processors.

Control

Identification and Management of pea and bean diseases

Find out more information on the key disease threats to your pea and bean crop. For each disease you will find out the importance of the disease in terms of potential yield penalty, how to identify the disease in its early stages and our advice on the best control strategies.

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