Twisted bud cases shouldn't worry growers

The increase in records of the disease in some sugarcane crops was the subject of discussion in the Plant Health Committee of Sugarcane.

Affected plant (left) and recovered plant (right).

Cenicaña ruled out that the increase in some sugarcane crops of the twisted bud disease, also known as “Pokkah boeng”, is cause for alarm for producers and mills.

According to the Phytopathology Area of ​​the Cenicaña Varieties Program, the increase in cases of this disease in recent months is due to changes in the environmental conditions that favor it; for example, climatic changes that occur in the transition from summer to winter or vice versa.

This condition is caused by the fungus Fusarium moniliforme Sheldongibberella fujikuroi (Sawada) Wollenweber, widely distributed worldwide in sugarcane-growing areas. The spores of the fungus are spread mainly by the help of wind and water currents, it persists naturally in plant residues and soil and can also infect other plant species such as sorghum, corn, rice, grasses and weeds.

The twisted bud affects most varieties of sugarcane, including CP 57-603, PR 61-632, MZC 74-275, V 71-51, CC 84-75, CC 85-92, CC 93-4418 , etc., in some with greater severity and incidence than in others, but this is not considered a disease of economic importance. Therefore, despite observations and evaluations in this regard, genetic improvement aimed at obtaining resistance to this disease is not required.

With the increase in the area planted with the CC 98-72 variety, lots with higher incidences of the disease have been observed at the age of four months. Likewise, the recovery of the diseased plant occurs after six months of age and it has been found that as cuts increase the incidence is lower. There have been no significant decreases in production due to the disease, since the plants fully recover.

The incidence and severity of the diseases not only depend on the variety planted, but also on the environmental conditions, the integral management of the crop and the characteristics of the pathogens present.

Information letter
Year 1 / Number 2 / August 2013

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