When Ontario growers detect high levels of soybean cyst nematodes (SCN) in their soils, sudden death syndrome (SDS) is usually not too far behind.

On this episode of the Soybean School, we take a closer look at the two yield robbers, and how growers can help control SDS with more effective nematode management. PRIDE Seeds agronomist Matt Chapple tells our own Bern Tobin that a grower’s SCN management plan should include: testing fields and monitoring SCN numbers, rotating resistant varieties, rotating to non-host crops, and considering use of a seed treatment nematicide.

When it comes to genetic resistance, seed companies have predominantly relied on the PI88788 gene to confer SCN resistance to soybean varieties, but with repeated usage, many growers are now seeing nematodes that exhibit resistance to the genetic trait.

Chapple notes that another source of SCN resistance — the Peking gene, which has its origin in Asian soybean varieties — has been available for many years. However, plant breeders have struggled to breed this source of resistance into top North American soybean lines.

But that’s changing, says Chapple, as he looks at how the new varieties carrying the Peking resistance gene are performing in test plots at a soybean disease nursery near Rodney, Ontario. He adds that new and numerous Peking varieties will be another tool in the SCN management toolbox. That’ll give growers the ability to rotate resistance sources and better defend against nematodes and the root damage that opens the door to late-season SDS infection.

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