Verticillium longisporum, a fungal pathogen considered a major disease of oilseed rape in Europe, has been discovered in canola in Manitoba. This soil borne fungus infects through the roots of canola plants and then grows into the xylem throughout vegetative parts of the plant. The xylem, which transports water, becomes clogged resulting in wilting and often death of the plant. The fungus produces microsclerotia that survive in plant debris in soil for many years.
Detection of Verticillium longisporum in plant tissues and soil is offered by The Pest Diagnostic Clinic, Agriculture and Food Laboratory, University of Guelph. Testing is done using Multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR).
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