Is It or Isn't It?
One of the odd things about this production year is the lack of Macrophomina showing up in strawberry in comparison to the amount of Fusarium. While I've been called out on a good number of fields that ultimately turned out to be Fusarium (thank you Steven Koike and your diagnostic lab staff!), I haven't been called out to a single one that's been found to be Macrophomina.
Recall that both of the diseases caused by these two pathogens look very similar in the field - plant collapse associated with a discolored crown.
Now for some of the work that Steve has been doing for his DNA testing for plant pathogens, he's been eager to get his hands on Macrophomina material. I've submitted a sample from a field off of Old Stage which had it last year and so the assumption is that it does this year too, and indeed plants are starting to go down.
I dutifully submitted a sample to Steve, and told him that if it wasn't Macrophomina I'd eat my hat. It just has to be Macrophomina, but then again with the current spate of all Fusarium calls, who knows?
Is it or isn't it?
7/22/2017 update. Steven Koike just emailed me, and it is indeed Macrophomina. Guess that means I can take my hat off of the dinner table and put it back on my head where it belongs. Thanks Steve!