A complex of fungal soilborne pathogens and plant-parasitic nematodes reduces wheat yields in the Pacific Northwest. On several other crops in nematode-infested soils, seed treatment with abamectin (Avicta) or Bacillus firmus (Votivo) or foliar application of spirotetramat (Movento) reduced root injury and improved yield. These products, along with fungicide seed treatments and aldicarb (Temik), were evaluated in 13 spring wheat trials over 3 years. During 2011, the mean wheat yield at four locations was 419 kg/ha greater (valued at $122/ha) from seed treated with fungicides and insecticide than from untreated seed, due to protection against soilborne fungal pathogens. Aldicarb increased the mean grain yield over the fungicide-plus-insecticide treatment by another 798 kg/ha (valued at $254/ha) and also reduced the density of Heterodera avenae but is not registered for use on wheat. Abamectin and B. firmus had negligible effects on grain yield and postharvest density of Pratylenchus spp. and H. avenae. Spirotetramat reduced density of H. avenae but did not improve grain yield. We conclude that management of fungal pathogens by seed protectants remains essential and that management of nematodes can be achieved through crop rotations and genetic resistance.
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