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Northern Illinois Agriculture

University of Illinois Extension
Kaityln B

Wheat root pathogen survey

Posted by Russel Higgins - Wheat

A current project under the direction of Dr. Carl Bradley, University of Illinois Extension Plant Pathologist, is a survey of root pathogens in wheat across Illinois. Graduate student Kaitlyn Bissonnette is collecting plants and soil samples that will be evaluated further on campus. Today she and Kelsy Krausz braved the windy conditions of northern Illinois to pull samples. I participated in several of the collection fields and saw varying degrees of winter kill. There is a concern over the amount of tillering that has or will take place before the the crop progresses to the reproductive stage. Why the concern over the numbers of tillers? Simply, the tillers, or side shoots that originate from the auxiliary buds at the leaf axils have the ability to generate seed heads and enhance yield. Fewer tillers usually reduces final yield.

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