The use of Vapam as a soil fumigant for clubroot [Plasmodiophora brassicae] control in canola
Clubroot is an important soilborne disease of canola in Alberta, Canada, which is caused by the obligate parasite Plasmodiophora brassicae. In recent year, clubroot has spread throughout central Alberta, with isolated infestations also identified into southern Alberta and Saskatchewan. Soil fumigation could prove to be an effective tool to eradicate localized clubroot infestations and new infection foci. Soil-applied Vapam is a liquid metam sodium solution used to control weeds, nematodes, insects and soil-borne diseases in crops. We analyzed the efficacy of various concentration rates of Vapam for the control of clubroot of canola at two heavily infested field locations in Edmonton, Alberta. A clubroot-susceptible canola cultivar was grown in soil treated with Vapam, with plants subsequently assessed for disease severity, plant weight and height, and gall weight. Preliminary results from one of the field locations suggest that Vapam may effectively reduce clubroot severity at certain concentrations. Next year, the same sites will be sown to the same canola cultivar to assess the residual effects of the Vapam treatments. In addition, new field sites will also be included in order to replicate the initial experiment using the same concentrations of Vapam.
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