Breeding for Resistance to Leaf Blotch Pathogens in Saskatchewan Oat
Over the four years (2014-2017) that field surveys were conducted in commercial oat fields to evaluate the prevalence of oat leaf blotch pathogens P. avenae was the most often identified, being present in 59% of the 160 fields surveyed. Cochliobolus sativus was present in 23% of surveyed fields while S. avenae was only identified in 3% of fields. The ranking prevalence of these pathogens was consistent across all four years and differs from prior surveys conducted where S. avenae was observed in all years and with greater prevalence than C. sativus in most years (2011-2013). While it is hard to draw firm conclusions as to why this difference was observed, the higher average summer temperatures (May-August) from 2015-2017 may suggest temperature, as opposed to precipitation amount (which varied across all years from below to above average) may favour the growth of C. sativus over S. avenae The observation that P. avenae is consistently the most prevalent oat leaf spot pathogen regardless of growing conditions indicates it may be less impacted by these environmental factors.