In 2016, severe epidemics of yellow (stripe) rust were observed on durum and bread wheat in European regions where the diseases in the past were insignificant or absent. Stem rust was also observed at epidemic levels for the first time in more than 50 years in Europe. On Sicily, both yellow and stem rust caused epidemics on cultivated durum and bread wheat and numerous breeding lines. In 2017, surveys in farmer fields and trial monitoring were carried out in Southern Italy during April-June. A total of 61 farmer fields and 9 experimental plots were inspected and rust samples collected. Despite unfavourable weather conditions for rust development, stem rust, yellow rust and leaf rust were detected on 86%, 50% and 14% of the surveyed sites, respectively. The surveys on Sicily covered approximately 70% of the durum wheat area, and data uploaded and visualised on the Wheat Rust Toolbox. On mainland Italy and Sardinia, yellow rust was observed, and sampled from nine fields in Sardinia and two in Puglia, whereas stem rust was detected and sampled in experimental plots in Sicily, Sardinia, Puglia, Lazio and Emilia Romagna. A total of 94 samples of stem rust, 30 samples of yellow rust, and 3 rust samples from Berberis aetnensis were sent to GRRC. Preliminary results of yellow rust genotyping and race phenotyping showed prevalence of race Triticale2015. Warrior(-) and a new race (Pst'New'- First detected in 2016) were also detected. For stem rust, TTTTF and TTRTF were detected in Sicily and mainland Italy and TKTTF was identified in Sardinia. Susceptibility of major commercial durum cultivars and breeding lines suggests the need for both durable resistance breeding and systematic surveys coupled to an early warning system.
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In the Czech Republic all three rust species on wheat occur. Leaf rust (Puccinia triticina) can be found almost everywhere, and it can cause yield losses up to 40% mainly in warmer parts of the country in South Moravia.
Yellow rust, typical for cooler climate, occurred in relatively long time intervals. However in 2013 new pathotypes tolerating higher temperatures occurred and caused yield losses. In 2016 yellow rust incidence was lower, being still important in Moravia, where yellow rust occurred already in previous years.
Stem rust incidence was very rare in the last years. However in Germany, outbreaks and new pathotypes (e.g. Digalu) of stem rust in 2013 were recorded and comeback of stem rust to Central Europe can be expected.
Rust control consists of chemical control and especially of breeding for resistance, that aims at combined resistance to all three rusts. On the scale 9 high resistance, 1 high susceptibility average 4 year rating (2013-2016) of the tested cultivars was 6.4 for yellow rust, 5.7 for leaf rust and 6.2 for stem rust.
"Triple rust resistance" was recorded in spring wheat LOTTE and winter wheat line SG-S 1684 13, high resistance to yellow rust and stem rust in the cultivar Steffi. Resistance to all three rusts of 14 winter wheat cultivars and 12 breeding lines from the Plant Breeding Station-Stupice is summarized on separate tables and described in the text.