Canola School: Clubroot monitoring key to protecting Saskatchewan industry

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Relatively few cases of clubroot have been confirmed in Saskatchewan, but with many documented cases just to the west in Alberta an obvious question emerges – has Saskatchewan been good or has it been lucky?

In this episode of Real Agriculture’s Canola School, Errin Willenborg, research director with SaskCanola, discusses the status of the clubroot monitoring program and the next steps to protect the Canola industry in the province.

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Saskatchewan has been monitoring clubroot for some time now. Most recently, clubroot was found in crop districts 9a and 9b. Willenborg says that SaskCanola heard from producers that they wanted more information on the distribution of clubroot in the province.

SaskCanola let the provincial ministry of agriculture know about the concerns of the producers and, as a result, the survey has been expanded. Willenborg says: “…it’s actually going to be 1,800 canola fields in the northern growing areas and also … down the east side of the province which kind of aligns with where clubroot or the clubroot pathogen has been detected in Manitoba.” SaskCanola’s hope is that the survey will produce a clubroot distribution map.

Willenborg says that in the past growers were concerned about having clubroot in their fields because they did not know what would happen. As a result, SaskCanola has worked hard with the Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities (SARM) to create a “farmer-driven management plan.”

Canola School: Welcome to Clubroot Anonymous

What this means is that if clubroot is discovered in a farmer’s field the farmer will develop a management plan with the agrologist of the farmer’s choice. This plan will be in accordance with a set of science-based criteria. The objective here is to deal with clubroot in Saskatchewan while the pathogen population is still low.

Scientists are working hard to help farmers in their fight against clubroot. The International Clubroot Workshop will be held in Edmonton in August 7 to 9, 2018. The world’s leading clubroot scientists will be there to expand the boundaries of clubroot knowledge, but there will also be a day dedicated to transferring current knowledge to farmers. “Certainly part of the conference is a research focus, but there is certainly part of it that will be great for farmers and agrologists to attend if they are interested,” Willenborg adds.

Click here for registration information for the International Clubroot Workshop is available at the link below.

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