Previous greenhouse studies with a noncommercial glyphosate-resistant sugarbeet variety indicated that susceptibility to Rhizoctonia crown and root rot could increase after glyphosate was applied. Greenhouse and field experiments were conducted in 2008 and 2009 to determine if glyphosate influenced disease severity in potential commercially available varieties of glyphosate-resistant sugarbeet. In the first greenhouse experiment in 2008, Hilleshög 9027RR, the most tolerant variety to Rhizoctonia crown and root rot, exhibited an increase in disease severity when glyphosate was applied. There were no significant differences between herbicide treatments in Hilleshög 9028RR, and glyphosate decreased disease severity in Hilleshög 9032RR when compared with the no-herbicide treatment. Experiments conducted to determine if glyphosate influenced Rhizoctonia solani growth in vitro indicated that glyphosate did not increase the radial growth of R. solani, except at 10× (190 µg ae ml−1) the normal rate of glyphosate plus ammonium sulfate (AMS). Field and additional greenhouse experiments were conducted using four commercial varieties. Differences in disease severity were observed when comparing varieties, but glyphosate did not significantly influence the severity of Rhizoctonia crown and root rot when compared with the no-herbicide control. Choosing a glyphosate-resistant sugarbeet variety with the best demonstrated tolerance to Rhizoctonia crown and root rot is an important factor in reducing disease severity and maintaining sugarbeet yield.
Nomenclature: Glyphosate; sugarbeet, Beta vulgaris L.; Rhizoctonia crown and root rot, Rhizoctonia solani Kühn.