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OMAFRA: Spore trap project detects Phytophthora infestans in Chatham-Kent

September 7, 2022  By Fruit & Vegetable

Amanda Tracey, a vegetable specialist with the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA), along with University of Guelph professor Cheryl Trueman and agronomist Joseph Tomecek, have found late blight-causing pathogens in southern Ontario as part of a spore-trapping network.

Since June 6 of this year, a project has been underway to assess Spornado and rotorod devices for the capture of Phytophthora infestans, an oomycete pathogen that causes late blight in tomatoes and potatoes. According to a report published on Sept. 2, low levels of P. infestans DNA were detected at one of the eight locations setup across the municipality of Chatham-Kent on Aug. 25 and again on Aug. 29.

This is the third year of a project to better understand if spore trapping is a useful tool to better predict risk of late blight. Its appearance in Ontario can be sporadic, with symptoms first reported anywhere from late June to late August, depending on the year. This makes it difficult for growers to know when to modify fungicide programs to account for increased risk of these diseases. |READ MORE


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