North Carolina Wheat: Stripe Rust and Head Scab Decisions

The majority of the crop is at Feekes 10.5. Yield potential doesn’t look as good as the last two years but I think we have the potential for a lot of 80 bushel wheat or better.

The head scab model ( has been and is currently showing a low risk for wheat from eastern Beaufort county and throughout all of Hyde county.  Granted, there are some hot spots to our north, south and west. I think this model is a valuable tool. Without it, I think treatments for head scab could be made that may not be warranted. Other considerations that should be made before treating for scab is how far along in the flowering process the crop is. The following link may help clarify this: Weather conditions have made it very difficult to make any type of fungicide application in the last 10 days.

We began finding isolated pockets of stripe rust today in Beaufort and Hyde counties. We are treating those areas with tebucanozole. Wet, cool conditions favor this disease. Dr. Randy Weisz has a short video that discusses stripe rust and it can be found here:

stripe rust

Stripe Rust

Barley yellow dwarf virus is also prevalent in areas. I rated one farm Saturday a 7 out of 10 (10 being bad). This farm was not treated in the fall for aphids. A seed applied insecticide probably would of helped this field tremendously. The benefit of a seed applied versus a foliar applied insecticide in the fall for aphid and hessian fly control is that it eliminates the timeliness factor. It also helps growers avoid wanting to piggy back a herbicide application that would normally be made later in December or later. That said, it is crucial that weed control is not ignored in wheat. I’ve included a picture of a field that was not treated with herbicide and has been suffocated by blue grass as a result.

Cereal leaf beetles continue to be a non issue. Larvae can be found in some areas now but we are a long way from threshhold.

Barley Yellow Dwarf  Virus

Barley Yellow Dwarf Virus

Heavy Poa Annua pressure, notice thin stand, short wheat

Heavy Poa Annua pressure, notice thin stand, short wheat

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