Effect and Underlying Mechanisms of Cultivar Mixtures on Weed and Disease Suppression in Organic Field Pea


The project will evaluate the effect of growing mixtures of semileafless (cv. CDC Dakota) and leafy (cv. CDC Sonata) field peas on Mycosphaerella blight development, weed suppression, lodging, and yields.  The objectives of the project are to identify an optimum ratio of semileafless to leafy peas for organic production, and to investigate the effect of different pea canopy environments on Mycosphaerella blight development.  The peas will be grown in field plots in five ratios of semileafless to leafy peas (semileafless only, 25:75, 50:50, 75:25, and leafy only), and at the seeding rates recommended for conventional and organic production (88 and 132 plants/m2).  The temperature and relative humidity beneath the canopy of each mixture will be monitored using sensors to evaluate the effects of canopy microclimate on Mycosphaerella blight.

To further investigate the effects of different environmental conditions on Mycosphaerella blight development, indoor experiments will be conducted using detached pea stipules (cv. CDC Dakota) held at different temperatures under constant humidity.  The formation of the two types of fruiting structures responsible for spread of Mycosphaerella blight, pycnidia and pseudothecia, will be assessed at each of six temperatures (5, 10, 15, 20, 25, and 30oC) over time.    

Left:  Early symptoms of Mycosphaerella blight below the canopy of a mixture of semileafless and leafy peas


Additional information about this project:
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TypeResearch Experiment
Research Area

In the Pulse Crop Pathology Group we are interested in the biology of fungal and bacterial pathogens and their interaction with the legume host plants. The ultimate goal is to gain a better understanding of strategies employed by these pathogens to successfully invade and colonize pulse crops, and to explo ... [more]

Related Species

Pea (Pisum sativum L.) is one of the first domesticated crops, and was the model crop for the foundational genetic studies by Gregor Mendel, which he first reported in 1865. Pea is grown in most temperate regions of the world with annual production over the past decade of 10-12 million tonnes of field pea and 14-17 million tonnes of vegetable pea. Pea belongs to the Leguminosae family and consists of two species, P. fulvum and P. sativum with several ‘wild’ subspecies of P. sativum. Canada is the leading producer and exporter of field pea in the world. Saskatchewan is the leading province in pea production followed by Alberta and Manitoba. ... [more]

Sequences, Variants & Markers