Plant Protection
Soybean Fungus Management
Pythium Seedling and Root Rot

Pythium can attack and rot seeds and seedlings prior to emergence, and can cause post-emergence damping off under wet conditions.
The characteristic symptom of most Pythium infections is soft, brownish-colored, rotting tissue.
In established plants, secondary roots can be soft and rotted and plants may be stunted or killed in some cases.
Phytophthora is a related pathogen that causes similar symptoms and the two can only be differentiated with laboratory examination.

Pathogen Involved:
Pythium infects at all stages of development, and is active in wet soils.
Pythium is a soilborne, fungal-like pathogen. Several different species of this pathogen damage soybeans.
The various species of Pythium that infect soybean have a wide host range that can include corn and many other crops.

Time of Occurrence:
Spring and early summer, although infection can also occur later in the season.
Conditions Favoring Disease:
The disease occurs in wet and cool conditions and in low, poorly drained areas, particularly on clay, compacted soils

Disease Management:
Plant in soils warmer than 55°F. Resistant varieties are not available.
Soil drainage should be improved if possible, and low areas of fields should be avoided, especially if a field has a history of seedling or root rot problems.
Some seed treatments can reduce seed and seedling rot.

From: Field Crop Diseases.Information and Management for Illinois

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