Prevalence of Plasmodiophora brassicae in a spring oilseed rape growing area in central Sweden and factors influencing soil infestation levels


A.-C. Wallenhammar Örebro läns hushållningssällskap, PO Box 271, S701-45 Örebro, Sweden


During 1986–87 the presence of clubroot in soils sampled from 190 fields was assessed using a bioassay method, based on baiting the soils with Brassica campestris spp. pekinesis cv. Granaat. Clubroot was detected in 148 (72%) of the fields investigated and, on average, 49.2% of the plants were infected according to the bioassay. Subsequent testing of fields in 1990 and 1992 (54 and 81 fields, respectively) where no further Brassica crops had been grown indicated a significant decrease in the degree of infestation to 7.1% in 1992. Clay soils showed, on average, the highest degree of infestation, and high infestation was recorded for a wide range of pH values (5.2–6.6). The highest degree of infestation was recorded on fields where oilseeds were grown five times during the period 1965–85. The results presented show that, in a field with 100% infestation, the level of infestation declined to below the detection level after a period of 17.3 years. The half-life of the spore inoculum was determined to be 3.6 years. During the sensitivity testing of different Brassica species and cultivars, it was found that Chinese cabbage showed a low percentage of infestation in two soils, whilst some oilseed rape and spring oilseed turnip rape cultivars showed high degrees of infestation in these soils.