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6 December, 2017 00:00 00 AM
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Adjusting sowing time seen key to saving rice from ‘false smut’

UNB

Sylhet: False smut, a major rice disease, is a cause of anxiety for the farmers who suffer crop loss due to the disease. And presence of false smut is there in varying ratios in almost all of the rice growing countries of the world including Bangladesh, reports UNB.

What is heartening is a Bangladeshi rice researcher has just recently come up with a concept that can help farmers address the false smut menace.

Badrunnesa, a senior scientific officer at the Bangladesh Rice Research Institute (BRRI), who has been pursuing a PhD research at Sylhet Agricultural University (SAU), identified that rice remains less susceptive to the disease if the grain panicles come out by October. So, she drew a conclusion that by planting rice accordingly farmers can make sure the monsoon rice Aman does not go to panicle exsertion stage beyond the month of October.

False smut causes chalkiness of grains which leads to reduction in grain weight. It also reduces seed germination. The disease can occur in areas with high relative humidity (>90%) and temperature ranging from 25−35 ºC. Rain, high humidity, and soils with high nitrogen content also favors disease development.Wind canspread the fungal spores from plant to plant. False smut is visible only after panicle exsertion.

False smut mainly inflicts damages to Aman crop but can also affect Aus and Boro. Popular varieties of Aman- BRRI Dhan49, BR11 and Indian varieties are mostly affected by this disease.

Plants infected with false smut have individual rice grains transformed into a mass of spore balls. These spore balls are initially orange, and then turn into greenish black when these mature.In most cases, not all spikelets of a panicle are affected, but spikelets neighboring smut balls are often unfilled.

Dr AHM Mahfuzul Haque, Associate Professor of Plant Pathology and Seed Science department of SAU supervised Badrunnesa's research.

 

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Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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