Canola School: Get a jumpstart on clubroot management

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The Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture has been hosting meetings this winter to help farmers keep up with the most current science and best management practices to deal with clubroot. Many of the meetings have been conducted with the participation of Canola Council of Canada agronomists and other industry specialists.

Allie Noble, crops extension specialist with Saskatchewan Agriculture, was one of the presenters at the recent clubroot meeting at Warman, Sask. In this Canola School, Noble outlines some important takeaways for farmers from that meeting.

Noble says that they have had a very busy winter. A new clubroot distribution map was released earlier this year and the extensions specialists are holding as many meetings as possible in areas where the greatest risk appears to be. “We’ve had a lot of extension events, whether it’s been days like this or talking at different extension meetings just to … cover clubroot and get as much education out there as possible about management and prevention”

There are some very simple takeaways from these consultations. for instance, while specific management strategies may differ from farm to farm, the best place to start, is with spore levels. “We talked about keeping our spore levels low,” says Noble, “avoiding building up those spore levels and also avoiding moving spores across to introduce them to new fields.”

Noble says it will be good to draw on the wealth of experience available from the Alberta experience. Things like “…using our resistant varieties responsibly, making sure that we’re keeping the effectiveness of those which means having a two year break, at least between using those varieties. They’re a great tool in the bucket but they’re only one of the many tools we should be using.”

The most important takeaway from the meeting may not be a specific management strategy, but an attitude. The presenters stressed that not only does the stigma have to be removed from around clubroot, the fear has to be too. As noble says, “Clubroot is manageable, we just need to get the jumpstart on it.”

Watch the entire interview with Allie Noble, crops extension specialist with the Province of Saskatchewan, below. 

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