Effect of seed damage and metalaxyl seed treatment on seedling blight of field pea
When cool, wet conditions occur at seeding, soil-bone diseases can severely reduce stand establishment in field pea. Seed that has been damaged by rough handling (augering or dropping) is particularly vulnerable to injury from Pythium spp. Field trials were conducted over 3 yr to assess the impact of seed rot, damping-off and seedling blight on seedling establishment and seed yield from damaged field pea seed. The effect of fungicide seed treatment was also examined. Mechanical damage to the seed reduced seedling emergence and seed yield. Seed treatment with metalaxyl (Apron) reduced the impact of seed damage, but did not always restore emergence and seed yield to the same level as from undamaged seed. Differences among cultivars were small relative to the effect of seed injury. This study showed that planting fungicide-treated, high quality field pea seed was an effective means to maximize emergence and stand establishment for commercial field pea production.
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