Ontario is a world-class producer of seed and commercial field corn due to the region’s exceptional combination of climate, soils, production expertise and infrastructure. There are many yield-limiting factors such as diseases and understanding these factors is critical to the future health and growth of the Ontario corn industry. For this reason, a corn disease insect survey was conducted in 2015 across the province which builds on surveys from previous years.
The 2015 corn disease survey provides vital information on endemic pathogen populations and allows for scouting of new invasive pathogens such as Goss’s bacterial wilt and blight [Clavibacter michiganensis subsp. Nebraskensis (Vidaver & Mandel) Davis et al.] which has been detected in other areas of Canada (Manitoba and Alberta) and bordering US Great Lakes States, including Michigan (Mehl et al., 2015).
The information obtained on disease and insect impacts in Ontario seed corn and commercial corn fields will assist both private and public breeders in hybrid development and potentially reduce losses to diseases and other pests in the future.