Anthracnose Stalk Rot
Symptoms - Early Season
- Same fungus may cause a foliar disease early in the season
Symptoms - Midseason
- Top-down symptom of plant death often observed a few weeks after tasseling ("top dieback" )
Symptoms – Late Season
- Shiny black coloration on outside of stalk late in season
- Internal stalk discoloration at nodes
- Stalk may be easily crushed when squeezed at base
- Stalk may lodge when pushed sideways
Identification of Anthracnose Stalk Rot
- For a positive identification of the disease with a hand lens, look for the presence of setae, which are bristlelike hair structures on the stalk surface.
|Setae are often found within a mucouslike droplet.
|If a microscope is available, look for clear, curved spores (below).
- Caused by Colletotrichum graminicola, a fungal pathogen
- Most common stalk disease of corn
- Favored by plant stress following pollination
- Disease development may result in:
- Plant lodging
- Reduced ability to harvest
- Yield reduction
Disease Cycle of Anthracnose Stalk Rot
Management of Anthracnose Stalk Rot
Crop rotation - at least 1 year out of corn
Tillage - encourages breakdown of crop residue, reducing disease inoculum
- DuPont Pioneer plant breeders select hybrids and parent lines for resistance, using induced and natural infection.
- DuPont Pioneer pathologists assist breeders in their efforts to inoculate, screen and characterize products.
- Hybrids differ significantly in resistance to anthracnose. Scores for Pioneer® brand hybrids generally range from 2 to 7 on a 1 to 9 scale (9=resistant).
- Your Pioneer sales professional can help you select high-yielding hybrids with the appropriate level of disease resistance and other key traits needed for your field.