Plant pathologists swap notes in Toowoomba

29 Dec, 2010 09:39 AM
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Kevin Moore, NSW I&I, Murray Sharman, DEEDI, Rohan Rainbow, GRDC manager crop protection and Mal Ryley, DEEDI discuss plant pathology research in Toowoomba.
Kevin Moore, NSW I&I, Murray Sharman, DEEDI, Rohan Rainbow, GRDC manager crop protection and Mal Ryley, DEEDI discuss plant pathology research in Toowoomba.

Following a difficult year for grain growers battling crop disease pathogens, pulse pathologists from across Australia have gathered in Toowoomba to exchange information.

The pathologists are working on several Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC)-supported programs, including management of ascochyta blight in chickpeas.

Dr Mal Ryley, Agri-Science Queensland principal plant pathologist said the meeting was a valuable forum for exchanging research outcomes and swapping notes about the current disease situation in different cropping regions.

“Collaboration, particularly across southern Queensland and northern NSW is an important part of leveraging the GRDC investment in disease management programs,” Dr Ryley said.

Speakers included Dr Kevin Moore, Industry and Investment NSW (I&I) who is currently working closely with northern region advisers and growers to manage major outbreaks of ascochyta blight and botrytis grey mould (BGM) in chickpeas amid a shortage of fungicide.

Dr Joop van Leur outlined a new project on virus resistance which a collaborative effort between Australia’s primary industries departments and the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA), with GRDC funding support.

Dr Rohan Rainbow, GRDC manager crop protection addressed the meeting on fungicide issues, including APVMA regulations, strobilurin mixtures for management of pulse diseases, spray quality and drift management.

Other discussions included improved screening methodology, screening for virus resistance, molecular diagnostics tools for field screening, seed health,

PBA trait priorities, and gaps in current knowledge and possible future research and development.

For more information on GRDC-funded plant pathology research, visit www.grdc.com.au .

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