University of Hertfordshire

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)99-111
Number of pages13
JournalAnnals of Applied Biology
Publication statusPublished - 2007


Data from a controlled environment experiment investigating effects of temperature on maturation of Leptosphaeria maculans pseudothecia were used to derive equations describing the times until 30% or 50% of pseudothecia were mature as a function of temperature. A wetness sensor was developed to estimate the oilseed rape debris wetness and operated with debris exposed in natural conditions in 2000 and 2001. The maturation of L. maculans pseudothecia on debris and concentrations of airborne L. maculans ascospores were observed from 1999 to 2004. There were considerable differences between years, with the first mature pseudothecia observed in September in most years. There were linear relationships between the first date when 10% of maximum ascospore release was observed and the dates when 30% or 50% of pseudothecia were mature. By summing the daily temperature-dependent rate of pseudothecial maturation for days after I August with rainfall > 0.5 mm, the dates when 30% or 50% of pseudothecia were mature were predicted. There was good agreement between predicted and observed dates when 30% or 50% of pseudothecia were mature. These equations for predicting the timing of L. maculans ascospore release could be incorporated into schemes for forecasting, in autumn, the severity of phoma stem canker epidermics in the following spring/summer in the UK.

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