Nathan Kleczewski, Extension Specialist – Plant Pathology; firstname.lastname@example.org
Several growers are considering planting canola this fall as a result of a recent contract placed by Perdue. If you do decide to plant canola this fall be aware that this plant is an excellent host for Sclerotinia white mold (Figure 1). Our collaborators in New Jersey recently spent three years looking at canola production. They told a story about their experience with canola at the Rutgers vegetable research farm in Bridgeton. A single season of canola resulted in immense development of white mold in the canola and subsequent issues with white mold at the farm on other vegetable crops.
Figure 1. Canola with signs of white mold.
When deciding on fields for canola, avoid those with any history of white mold, whether it be in vegetables, sunflowers, or soybeans. In addition, ensure that you do not plant canola in front of vegetable crops or soybeans, where white mold can be an issue. Cucurbits would likely be the best option for a crop following canola. For more information on Sclerotinia on canola see www.ag.ndsu.edu/pubs/plantsci/crops/pp1410.pdf