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Rust

Rusts: Crown, Leaf and Stem
Causal Agent: Crown-Puccinia coronata; Leaf- Uromyces dactylidis; Stem (Black)-Puccinia graminis; Stripe (Yellow)-Puccinnia striiformis


Rust from 3m

 

Susceptible Turfgrass
Kentucky Bluegrass, Annual Bluegrass, Ryegrass, Old Bentgrass cultivars, Bermudagrass, and tall and fine Fescue.

 

Symptoms

  • Rust diseases cause light yellow flecks initially on the leaf blades and sheaths. The flecks enlarge, elongate, and turn yellow in colour.

  • The infected areas rise above the epidermis and then rupture, releasing spores that are yellowish-orange to reddish-brown in colour.

  • The leaf blade turns yellow starting at the tip and progressing to the base sheath.

  • A severe disease infection can cause the shoot to turn yellowish to reddish-brown in colour and slow in growth.

  • The turf may appear thin as individual shoots die.

 

Conditions favouring Disease

  • Rust diseases typically occur in early Spring through Autumn, depending on the location of the turf.

  • Rusts favour moist, low-light areas.

  • Depending on the species, rusts favour temperatures between 18°C and 30°C.

  • Severe rust infections occur on slow-growing turfgrass, particularly those with low nitrogen levels and/or plant water stress.

 

Solutions

Integrated Turf Management

  • Convert to a turfgrass species or cultivar (especially for Kentucky Bluegrass and Perennial Ryegrass) that are resistant to rust diseases found in the area.

  • Apply adequate levels of nitrogen.

  • Remove clippings from turf.

  • Reduce thatch.

  • Reduce shade and improve air circulation.

  • Regulate irrigation to minimise the amount of time moisture remains on the leaf surface.

  • Water deeply and infrequently.

  • Use penetrant fungicides to control rust diseases on slow-growing grasses and to grasses that are not mown.

 

Fungicidal Control
Banner   and Heritage have a label recommendation for Rust in South Africa.