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Sudden Death Syndrome of Soybean

Causal Agent: 

Fusarium virguliforme (formerly Fusarium solani f. sp. glycinae)

Symptoms and Signs: 

  • foliar symptoms progress from pale yellow spots in between veins, to necrotic lesions with a bright yellow halo, and finally to complete interveinal necrosis
  • leaf drop
  • blue-green spores on the tap root
  • pod abortion

Disease Cycle:

  1. Spores overwinter in the soil.
  2. Spores will directly infect soybean roots shortly after emerging.
  3. Severe colonization occurs between R1 and R6 growth stages. The fungus produces toxins and foliar symptoms appear.
  4. As plant matures, leaves and pods will drop.
  5. The fungus produces hundreds of spores in the plant material that will serve as inoculum for subsequent growing seasons.

Disease Management:

  • Seed treatments
  • Host resistance
  • Manage Soybean Cyst Nematode
  • Cultural practices- plant when soil is warm, improve drainage, reduce compaction