Crop diseases

Plant diseases are a significant yield and quality constraint for growers of broadacre crops in Western Australia.

Plant pathogens can be fungal, bacterial, viral or nematodes and can damage plant parts above or below the ground. Identifying symptoms and knowing when and how to effectively control diseases is an ongoing challenge for WA growers of cereals (wheat, barley, oats and triticale), pulses (field pea, chickpea, faba bean), canola and lupin crops.

The Department of Agriculture and Food, Western Australia (DAFWA) has a strong research, development and extension focus to assist industry to reduce the impact of crop diseases on all broadacre crops.

Results of extensive field/lab/glass house research and surveys across the WA grainbelt every year contribute to disease management packages and forecasting tools, and identify new incursions of crop pathogens or strains into WA.

DAFWA also gathers and extends industry disease reports (PestFax), provides a disease diagnosis service (AGWEST Plant Laboratories) and a broad range of management information for specific foliar and root diseases and viruses.


  • 11 July 2017

    Management of weeds, disease and nitrogen nutrition are ongoing challenges that limit yield potential.

  • 17 October 2017

    Broccoli, cabbage, Chinese cabbage, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts are members of the brassica family.

  • Oat leaves displaying water soaked appearance with red-brown longitudinal stripes typical of stripe blight
    19 February 2016

    There are two types of bacterial disease which infect oat foliage; halo (Pseudomonas syringae pv. coronafaciens) and stripe (Pseudomonas syringae pv. striafaciens) blight.

  • 23 May 2017

    Spot type net blotch (STNB) has become increasingly more common due to the widespread cultivation of susceptible varieties, including Hindmarsh, LaTrobe and Scope CL.

  • Small, dark, irregular flecks on older leaves
    11 April 2016

    Blackspot is the most widespread and destructive disease of field peas in Western Australia.

  • 16 August 2017

    Sclerotinia stem rot is a fungal disease of canola, initially only common in parts of the northern agricultural region.

  • Stem rot sclerotes packed inside infected lupin stems
    1 July 2015

    Two fungi which cause similar diseases referred to as sclerotinia white mould are Sclerotinia sclerotiorum and Sclerotinia minor.

  • 31 July 2017

    PestFax is a weekly informative and interactive reporting service, providing risk alerts, current information and advice on pests and diseases threatening crops and pastures throughout the grain be

  • 17 July 2017

    Information is provided here to assist management of diseases and viruses that occur in broadacre crops grown in Western Australia - cereals (wheat, barley, oats and triticale), pulses (field pea,

  • Reddish-brown lesions on the hypocotyl
    29 May 2015

    Strains of the soil-borne fungus Rhizoctonia solani that cause hypocotyl rot in all lupin species and most other crop and pasture legumes in WA.

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