Many farmers are evaluating their fields this year to see if fungicide applications are needed.
Kiersten Wise, Purdue Extension field crop disease specialist says their trials have shown that fungicide application provides the most return on investment when applied to a field with high disease risk factors or has the presence of a disease.
“These would be diseases like Grey Leaf Spot or Northern Leaf Blight,” she says. “We haven’t had conditions that are favorable for diseases like that to develop this year and in a lot of cases it would make us question whether a fungicide application is necessary in a year like 2012.”
However, she tells Brownfield irrigated fields are a different story. “With irrigation you’re creating an environment that is more susceptible for diseases to develop on a consistent basis,” she says. “On farms that irrigate – we want to ask ourselves ‘Is the hybrid is susceptible to foliar disease like Grey Leaf Spot?’ ‘Is there a lot of residue?’ or ‘Is it corn on corn?’.”
Wise says those combined with irrigation – create risk factors for diseases to develop.