Department of Crop Sciences, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL 61801
Harris Moran Seed Company, Nampa, ID 83687
Harris Moran Seed Company, San Juan Bautista, CA 95045
Several different Rp genes in corn condition chlorotic fleck resistant reactions to Puccinia sorghi. Rp-resistance has been used successfully for the past 15 years to control common rust on sweet corn in North America. Most, but not all, Rp-resistant sweet corn hybrids carry the Rp1-D gene. In August and September 1999, isolates of P. sorghi were collected from Rp-resistant sweet corn grown in Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Michigan, and New York. This was the first widespread occurrence in North America of P. sorghi virulent on corn with Rp1-D (2). The origin of this population of P. sorghi with a virulence phenotype new to North America is not known. Since many believe Mexico is the source of common rust inocula for the midwestern United States, it is important to discover if this virulence occurs in Mexico. Forty-one Rp-resistant and nine susceptible sweet corn hybrids were planted 8 December 1999 in a nursery near Los Mochis, Mexico, in the state of Sinalao. Rp-resistant hybrids had been effective against common rust in Los Mochis nurseries prior to 1999. Each hybrid was in a single row of about 30 plants. The Los Mochis nursery also included two replicate rows of sweet corn or field corn inbred lines with one of 17 different single Rp-genes or one of 11 different compound genes for rust resistance (1). Plants were exposed to local populations of P. sorghi. Reactions were rated in March 2000. Sporulating uredinia (susceptible reactions) were abundant on all sweet corn hybrids and on inbreds with Rp1-D. Susceptible reactions also were observed on other inbred lines with Rp-genes except for lines with the single genes: Rp1-E, Rp-G, Rp1-I, Rp1-K, and Rp1-L or lines with the compound rust genes: Rp1-GI, Rp1-G5, Rp1-GDJ, Rp1-GFJ, Rp1-G5JC, Rp1-G5JD, and Rp1-JFC. This pattern of virulence is similar to that of P. sorghi isolates collected in the midwestern United States in 1999. Rp-resistance currently available in most sweet corn hybrids grown in the Midwest will not be effective when this population of P. sorghi spreads from Mexico to the United States. Therefore, other sources of rust resistance need to be incorporated into sweet corn hybrids.
References: (1) S. H. Hulbert, Annu. Rev. Phytopathol. 35:292, 1997. (2) J. K. Pataky and W. F. Tracy. Plant Dis. 83:1177, 1999.