What is DON?
Deoxynivalenol (DON) is a mycotoxin that can be produced in wheat and barley when the crop is infected by Fusarium head blight (scab).
Fusarium head blight presents as bleached wheat flowers before maturity
When does scab infect a plan?
Scab infects grain heads when wet weather or simply moist soil occurs during the flowering and grain filling stages of plant development.
How does scab affect the plant?
Early scab infections can reduce yields by causing sterility of flowers (fewer kernels) and by forming shrunken, chalky white or discolored scabby kernels commonly called 'tombstones'. Kernels infected late in their development may be normal in size and show little or no visible damage but still have elevated levels of DON. Most of the DON is present in wheat's seed coat or bran.
Impact on quality
For the flour miller, infected kernels may reduce flour quality or require screening to remove the damaged kernels. The screening process adds costs to the miller and the removed material has little value.
Learn more about the impact of grain damage on quality.
Protect against scab and DON
Using Prosaro® fungicide can help fight the effects of scab when used at appropriate application timings. For wheat, apply at Feekes 10.51 and for barley, apply at Feekes 10.5. Planting wheat varieties that have some level of resistance to scab will complement the use of Prosaro to help manage this destructive disease.
Learn more about protecting your wheat from scab.
Learn more about improving grain quality and maximizing yield: