Leaf Rust Found in Wheat

Leaf rust (Puccinia triticina) was found this week in Dillon  County on wheat that is close to heading.  Everyone growing wheat should scout their fields for rust as soon as they can.

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The ideal time to apply preventative fungicides to wheat is just after the flag leaves are fully emerged, but if you have rust present, you can pull the trigger earlier.  You can see which fungicides are labeled for leaf rust on page 15 of the Clemson Wheat Cheat Sheet.  Here are some photos below of what to look out for.

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Rust pustules on lower leaf.

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Stunted plants from severe leaf rust infection.

If you have a field that is badly stunted like in the photo above, you may need to assess whether the field is worth spending the money on a fungicide.  Talk it over with your crop insurance adjuster.

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25x magnification of rust pustules on a wheat leaf.

If you have any questions about leaf rust, contact your local Clemson Extension Agent.  You can find the contact info for each county office at this link.

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