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Thursday, 07 September 2017 16:03

Pink Rot and Leak Management

Pink rot symptoms on tubers Pink rot symptoms on tubers Miller Research

Pink rot and leak are damaging diseases of potatoes both in the field and in storage. Learn more about pink rot and leak management here.

Miller Research was invited to give a presentation at the 9th Washington/Oregon Potato Conference on Wednesday, January 24, 2018. This presentation was titled, "Using All the Tools in the Pink Rot Management Tool Box" and dicusses nine tools growers can use to manage pink rot:

  1. Field selection/crop rotation
  2. Adjust soil pH with lime in low pH soils
  3. Plant less susceptible varieties
  4. Proper irrigation management
  5. Use appropriate fungicides
  6. Avoid “disease-favorable” conditions at harvest
  7. Apply post-harvest fungicides
  8. Reduce pulp temperatures to 55 F or lower
  9. Grade out infected tubers going into storage

The slides from that presentation are attached below.

Even if a field has been treated with fungicide during the season to manage pink rot, the disease can still develop. Infected tubers can contaminate healthy tubers during the harvest operations leading to additional disease development in storage.

The use of phosphorous acid applied at harvest is an effective method of reducing this contamination. However, the postharvest application can be difficult from a logistical standpoint. The attachment below is a presentation given at the Idaho Potato Conference January 2017 and brieflly discusses pink rot management, including postharvest applications of phosphorous acid. Some information on Pythium leak is also presented.