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Agronomy Talk

KENTUCKY AND TENNESSEE - AUSTIN SCOTT, CCA

Ear Rot at Harvest

Published on Wednesday, October 19, 2016

I’ve noticed a fair amount of ear rot this year, in particular, Diplodia. Diplodia can be exceptionally bad because the disease will eventually mummify the entire ear and can cause the kernels to be very lightweight.

There are three mostly “white” ear rots: Diplodia, Gibberella, and Fusarium, and three mostly “green” ear rots: Aspergillus, Trichoderma, and Penicillium. While the “green” ear rots don’t reduce test weight as much as some of the others, there can be other mycotoxins associated with them. In particular, aflatoxin is associated with the green ear rot, Aspergillus. Aflatoxin can cause cancer in both humans and animals, so that “green” ear rot should be monitored closely. If you begin to see ear rot as harvest progresses, don’t hesitate to contact your local Beck’s representative for proper identification.

Author: Austin Scott

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