fusarium head blight of wheat n.
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Fusarium Head Blight of Wheat. Fusarium Head Blight (FHB). Also called head scab Caused by the fungus Fusarium Survives on grass crop residues Corn Grain Sorghum Small grains Fusarium shown growing on wheat residue in picture to the right. Life Cycle of FHB.

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fusarium head blight fhb
Fusarium Head Blight (FHB)
  • Also called head scab
  • Caused by the fungus Fusarium
    • Survives on grass crop residues
      • Corn
      • Grain Sorghum
      • Small grains
  • Fusarium shown growingon wheat residue in pictureto the right
life cycle of fhb
Life Cycle of FHB

Credit: M. McMullen & S. Zhong

North Dakota State Univ.

fhb life cycle
FHB Life Cycle
  • Wheat is infected at the flowering stage
  • Environmental conditions required for infection
    • Free moisture
    • Temperatures from 75 to 85 F
    • Source of inoculant
  • These conditions are less prevalent during flowering west of I-35 than east of I-35
fhb symptoms
FHB Symptoms
  • Bleached or white heads with pink or salmon-colored residue
  • Heads can be partially infected
  • Other things can cause similar symptoms and be misdiagnosed as FHB
    • Freeze injury
    • Hail damage
    • Waterlogged conditions
    • Various root rots
Partially infected wheat heads on the left and entirely infected head on the rightNote the pink/salmon color in the black circle
fhb consequences
FHB Consequences
  • FHB-infected grain can contain compounds called mycotoxins
  • DON (deoxynivalenol – also called ‘vomitoxin’) is the most common of these compounds
  • FDA guidelines for use of DON-infected wheat are in the table to the right
fhb management to reduce risk
FHB Management to Reduce Risk
  • Crop rotation – rotate to a non-host crop such as sunflower, soybean, or sesame
  • Tillage – getting rid of the corn or wheat residue will reduce the amount of inoculant present
  • Fungicides – triazole fungicides applied at flowering can provide suppression but not complete control

Foliar wheat fungicides – 2009

Rate PHIA Leaf Stripe Powdery Septoria Tan

Product (oz/A) (days/GS) rust rustB mildew complex spot FHB_


Tilt 4 10.5 VG VG VG VG VG P

Folicur 4 30 E E G VG VG F

Caramba 10-17 30 E E --- --- --- G

Proline 5.0-5.7 30 VG --- --- VG VG G

Prosaro 6.5-8.5 30 E E G VG VG G


Headline 6.0-9.0 10.5 E E G VG E NR

Quadris 6.2-10.8 10.5 E E F-G VG E NR


Quilt 14 45 E E VG VG VG NR

Stratego 10 35 VG VG G VG G NR

TwinLine 6-11 30/10.5 E E G VG E NR

APHI = pre-harvest interval; number of days required between last application & harvest

BEfficacy ratings from the North Central Regional Committee on Management of Small Grains Diseases;

E=excellent; VG=very good; G=good; F=fair; P=poor; NR=no rating.

This information is provided only as a guide. It is the responsibility of the pesticide applicator by law to read and follow all current label directions. No endorsement is intended for products listed, nor is criticism meant for products not listed.

fhb management of harvested grain
FHB Management of Harvested Grain
  • Increase air flow– remove shriveled seed by increasing combine airflow
  • Clean seed– remove as many small seed as possible by post-harvest screening and cleaning
  • Seed treatment – if seed will be saved for planting, consider applying a seed treatment. The same fungus that causes FHB causes many seedling diseases
  • FHB requires a specific set of environmental conditions for infection of wheat.
  • Planting wheat after a non-host crop will greatly decrease the likelihood of infection.
  • FHB-infected grain may or may not be useable depending on the level of mycotoxins in the grain.