Foliar Diseases of Soybean in the South
By Raymond W. Schneider, Ph.D.
Professor of Plant Pathology,
Department of Plant Pathology & Crop Physiology
Louisiana State University Agricultural Center
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Watch Presentation (33 min 23 sec)
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Foliar diseases of soybean can be devastating in the South, especially in the Gulf South, where humidity remains high during the day and occasional tropical storms provide ideal conditions for disease development and spread. Diseases that rarely occur elsewhere in the U.S. may limit soybean productivity in this region. Furthermore, we cannot make broad generalizations about which diseases may be more or less severe in the South. A case in point is Cercospora leaf blight, which was a curiosity no more than 10 years ago but is now one of the most devastating and recalcitrant diseases in Louisiana. Asian soybean rust (ASR) is another notorious example. This disease, first discovered in Louisiana in November 2004, has the potential to cause substantial economic losses to the nationwide soybean industry, but Gulf Coast states are afflicted with this malady on a yearly basis. While producers in this region have learned to manage ASR and now view it as just another late season disease, there is a substantial cost associated with preventative fungicide applications, and this cost must be considered when calculating economic losses attributable to ASR. As described in this presentation, there is still much to be learned about these and other foliar diseases with regard to disease management. The purpose of this presentation is to provide a broad overview of the most prevalent foliar diseases in the South, including symptoms and diagnosis. The viewer is encouraged to seek advice from local consultants and extension professionals for literature, diagnoses, and specific disease management recommendations.
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