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Fusarium Ear Rot


© Purdue University, Plant and Pest Diagnostic Laboratory

Pathogen(s) causing disease:

Fusarium moniliforme

Symptoms:

Seldom involves whole ear, rot usually occurs at tip of ear or in scattered areas on ear, color of mold around infected kernels varies from white to pink to reddish brown. Infected kernels vary in color from light to dark brown. Often the decay begins with insect-damaged kernels.

Conditions:

Wide range of weather conditions. Infection occurs through injury by insects or environmental stress.

Management:

Resistant hybrids (avoid sowing hybrids with weak seed coats or poor husk cover), crop rotation, clean plowing, harvest grain early, dry corn to 15 per cent moisture content and below to prevent further mold growth in storage. Fungus can produce mycotoxins known as fumonisins.

Sources:

Purdue University
Iowa State University

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