Sunflowers are native to North America, as are the pathogens that infect them, which is the reason producers generally see more diseases on sunflowers than crops that didn’t originate from here, says Dr. Samuel Markell, professor and extension plant pathologist at North Dakota State University.
Currently, there is a new tool available to sunflower growers to make identifying diseases in the field easier. The Sunflower Disease Diagnostic Series is a set of diagnostic cards developed by five pathologists across the north central region. Diseases are organized by plant part (e.g. leaf, stem or head) and symptom occurrence timelines.
Click image to enlarge chart.
“It’s a handy tool to have in the glovebox,” says Alison Pokryzwinski, Nuseed Technical Agronomist. “It’s easy to find the information you need to make the right choice for disease management.”
And when it comes to protecting your crop from disease, the more information you have about what’s in your field, the better off you are, says Markell.
Whether through diagnostic cards, images or a crop consultant, accurate disease identification is important, says Markell, as is scouting.
The diagnostic cards are available online and for a limited time, you can request a complimentary printed set by emailing [email protected].