An on-farm approach to evaluate the interaction of management practices and environment on FHB development in wheat

  • Term: 3 years, beginning in 2018
  • Funding Amount: $ 174,357
  • Lead Researcher(s): Christiane Catellier (Indian Head Agricultural Research Foundation)
  • Funding Partners: N/A

Project Description:

This research is tailored to understand how the interaction of management practices and environmental conditions in farmers’ fields affect FHB development in wheat; and to develop a more precise recommendations for FHB management in wheat considering all the variables that influence FHB development.

Fusarium head blight (FHB) has become a substantial management concern for wheat growers in Saskatchewan due to changing weather patterns, more intensive farming practices, and the movement of infected seed. FHB infection results in reduced yield, as well as there is huge impact on grain quality due to the presence of Fusarium damaged kernels and mycotoxins (i.e. DON) which leads to reduced marketability.  An integrated approach is recommended for FHB management in wheat as no single management practice is independently effective in controlling the disease. Field crop production is becoming increasingly precise, as inputs are costly and producers are looking for techniques/practices to decrease risk.

This project will examine the interacting effects using data collected directly from producers’ fields. Results of this study will help producers to more precisely tailor management decisions to their crop production goals (wheat yield and quality) and to the environmental constraints of their operations. Simple changes in management could lead to changes in microclimate for wheat development and could result in an increase in the overall productivity and quality of the crop with a significant benefit to producers and the industry in general. Producers could become more profitable and environmentally sustainable by avoiding unnecessary operations and inefficient use of inputs.

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