Brad Carlson of Capital Press reports that a spore-sampling network designed to detect airborne diseases before they impact southern Idaho crops has been enhanced this year, its third in operation.
Faster detection and reporting, and the ability to find more types of disease that could threaten potatoes and other crops, are among the benefits.
“We are hoping to add additional diseases to the system,” said James Woodhall, plant pathologist and assistant professor at the University of Idaho Parma Research and Extension Center. “We hope to be better able to get information out with the web, put more out and be more confident with that information.”
“Last year with Idaho Potato Commission funding, we developed DNA and RNA extraction methods,” said Woodhall, who spearheaded creation of the spore-sampling network. A desire to detect late blight, early blight and white mold in potato fields drove creation of the network.
The project involves UI researchers Kasia Duellman and Phil Wharton with support from Miller Research, McCain Foods, J.R. Simplot Co. and IPC.
Read the full report in Capital Press here
Photo: James Woodhall, plant pathologist and assistant professor at the University of Idaho Parma Research and Extension Center. | University of Idaho