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Pre-plant Planning

Staying Ahead of Downy Mildew

Sunflower growers can protect their yields by choosing hybrids with built in downy mildew resistance (DMR).  Nuseed has launched two new high oleic hybrids with DMR resistance for this season; N4H470 CL Plus and N4H521 CL, both with the added protection of Plenaris® seed treatment. 


Adding a seed treatment technology to the seed, such as Plenaris, helps stay one step ahead of diseases, like downy mildew, that have many races and can adapt to overcome protection practices.

For example, since 1980, downy mildew races have overcome some downy mildew resistance traits in sunflower hybrids and have become insensitive to chemistries used to control the disease.  Although crop rotation is effective for other sunflower diseases such as sclerotinia, rust and phomopsis, rotation has minimal effect on downy mildew management because overwintering spores will survive in the soil up to ten years.


Downy mildew is a primary example of a disease that can overcome all the control mechanisms, whether it’s crop rotation, genetic resistance or seed treatments.  It’s important to keep presenting new control tactics to keep it in check.  Because this is an adaptive organism we need lots of tools. To manage it effectively, we continually need new resistance genes as well as novel fungicides.

Read more in SUCCEED about downy mildew and other diseases you can take action against.

Sunflower Diseases

NDSU Disease Diagnostic Series