New Clubroot Strain Identified in Manitoba

A new strain of clubroot – a yield-robbing canola disease – has been identified in Manitoba.

Identified as pathotype 3A, the new strain is able to overcome some first-generation sources of genetic resistance in commercial canola cultivars, according to a provincial statement on Friday. However, genetic resistance can still be found in a small number of commercially-available canola varieties specifically labelled for resistance to 3A.

The discovery of the new strain in the Rural Municipality of Pembina comes after multiple cases of clubroot DNA and plant symptoms having been found throughout Manitoba since 2013. Outside of Alberta, very few fields have been found to contain novel pathotypes like this, and this is the first such finding in Manitoba.

“This is yet another cue for the industry to continue to take this disease seriously and implement clubroot management plans,” said Dan Orchard, agronomy specialist with the Canola Council of Canada. “We still have an opportunity to get ahead of this disease and limit the impact it has on canola producers and the industry.”

All canola producers are encouraged to grow clubroot resistant varieties, limit the movement of soil, extend rotations to at least a two-year break between canola crops, control canola volunteers and other brassica hosts, and diligently scout.

Clubroot is a soil-borne disease, and can be transferred from field to field on soil particles. Soil movement can be on footwear, vehicle tires, farm machinery, custom equipment, or via wind or water movement across a landscape. Infected plants suffer premature ripening, significantly reduced yield and/or early plant death under moderate to severe levels of infestation. Symptoms of the disease are most noticeable late in the season, and can still be seen during and after harvest on plant roots.

Source: DePutter Publishing Ltd.

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