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Interaction of Rhizoctonia solani and Rhizopus stolonifer Causing Root Rot of Sugar Beet : an international journal of applied plant pathology

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In recent years, growers in Michigan and other sugar beet (Beta vulgaris) production areas of the United States have reported increasing incidence of root rot with little or no crown or foliar symptoms in sugar beet with Rhizoctonia crown and root rot. In addition, Rhizoctonia-resistant beets have been reported with higher levels of disease than expected. In examining beets with Rhizoctonia root rot in Michigan, over 50% of sampled roots had a second potential root rot pathogen, Rhizopus stolonifer. Growing conditions generally were not conducive to disease production by this pathogen alone, so we investigated the potential for interaction between these two pathogens. In greenhouse tests, four of five sugar beet varieties had more severe root rot symptoms when inoculated with both pathogens than when inoculated with either pathogen alone. This synergism occurred under conditions that were not conducive to disease production by R. stolonifer. Host resistance to Rhizoctonia crown and root rot reduced diseases severity, but was insufficient to control the disease when both pathogens were present. This raises concerns about correct disease diagnosis and management practices and indicates that a root rot complex may be important on sugar beet in Michigan.
Hanson, L.E.
Includes references
Plant disease 2010 May, v. 94, no. 5
Journal Articles, USDA Authors, Peer-Reviewed
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