CropAlert Update Newsletter May 2016

CropAlert Update Newsletter May 2016

Below is some information about useful prediction tools, phone apps and pre-season updates to help plan for the coming season.

Blackspot Manager for field peas

Field pea growers can use the Blackspot Manager to help reduce the risk associated with the fungal disease blackspot (syn. Ascochyta blight) by sowing when the risk prediction for blackspot is low. New updates are available at

The recent rain (May 8 and 9, 2016) has reduced the blackspot risk in many parts of the state including areas such as Horsham where the blackspot risk from mid-May is now low. The blackspot risk at Benalla, Charlton, Hopetoun and Swan Hill will be medium until mid-May, but with continued rain the risk in these areas is expected to reduce, but check the Blackspot Manager for updates.

Further information regarding the blackspot manager can be found here. Blackspot Manager is produced by the Department of Agriculture and Food Western Australia (DAFWA) with support from the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) and fortnightly forecasts are available between May and June. Updates can be accessed on the DAFWA Blackspot Manager 2016 here.

A free SMS blackspot alert service is also available. To subscribe text blackspot, your name, and nearest weather station or location to 0475 959 932.

Practices to reduce risk if sowing in a high or medium risk period:

  • Do not sow adjacent to field pea stubble.
  • Sow into paddocks with at least a four year rotation of field pea.
  • If the potential yield is over 2t/ha, then use P-Pickel T seed treatment and if the conditions are conducive for disease apply mancozeb (2kg/ha) at the 9-nodes stage and again at early flowering (SARDI Field pea disease management guide).

Further information on blackspot management

Ag Note – Ascochyta Blight of Field Peas – Crop Disease Manual, Ascochyta Blight of Field peas

Pre-season disease updates

Know what to expect this season. Pre-season disease updates are available for cereals, oilseeds and pulses at

Diagnostic tools

Not quite sure what that disease is? A range of online tools and smartphone apps are now available to help identify disease crop diseases. These have been developed with help from Australian plant pathologists and researchers. Further information can be found at

The Crop Disease Manual can be found online at

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