PestFacts WA

Canola sclerotinia update

  • Moonyoonooka
  • Moora
  • Northam
  • Woodanilling
  • Kendenup
  • Gibson
Sclerotinia infection in a canola leaf
Sclerotinia leaf infection. Photo courtesy of: Ciara Beard (DPIRD).

Plant pathologist Ciara Beard (DPIRD) reports finding sclerotinia leaf infection in a 44Y27 (RR) canola crop near Moonyoonooka this week. The crop was sown in late April and came up in early May as it is in a part of the paddock where the soil is always moist. It came up before the June break. The crop is patchy with different growth stages but the most advanced plants are at end of flowering/pod fill and these are showing leaf symptoms. The good canopy cover and density of the plants plus ongoing moisture is favourable for sclerotinia in this paddock but this is not typical of what most canola growers crops are like in the region this year. Ciara says most of the canola crops she has visited this season emerged after the June 7th break and only started flowering in the last two weeks. At this point in time most of the crops she has seen are not likely to have the canopy cover and density to favour sclerotinia infection.

Variable growth stages displayed in crop with canola plants that germinated in May (background) alongside canola plants that emerged in June (front).
Variable growth stages in crop with more advanced canola plants that germinated in May (background) alongside younger canola plants that emerged in June (front). Photo courtesy of: Ciara Beard (DPIRD).

DPIRD recommends growers use the SclerotiniaCM app to assist in determining the likely value of applying a fungicide application this season on their specific paddock.

Ciara has trials in at a number of locations in the Geraldton Port Zone this season to determine the value or otherwise of fungicide application for protecting canola crops from sclerotinia this season.

Plant pathologist Jean Galloway (DPIRD) reports that apothecia are present at Moora, Northam, Woodanilling, Kendenup and Gibson. In a trial at Northam, sclerotes produced last year and those produced during the 2017 season have produced apothecia.

Jean suggests that growers consider the risk of infection from paddocks sown to canola in 2017 and 2018.

For fungicide information visit DPIRD’s Registered foliar fungicides for canola in Western Australia page.

For more information on sclerotinia and managing the disease refer to DPIRD’s;

For more information on sclerotinia contact plant pathologists Ciara Beard, Geraldton on +61 (0)8 9956 8504 or Ravjit Khangura, South Perth on +61 (0)8 9368 3374 or Andrea Hills, Esperance on +61 (0)8 9083 1144.


Article authors: Ciara Beard (DPIRD Geraldton), Jean Galloway (DPIRD Northam) and Cindy Webster (DPIRD Narrogin).

Article input by: Ciara Beard (DPIRD Geraldton), Jean Galloway (DPIRD Northam) and Art Diggle (DPIRD South Perth).