The wheat disease control myth

Preventative action makes all the difference


Myths can lead people down the wrong path. In agriculture, growers are not immune to the hazards certain myths can create. As you anticipate the challenges that your crops might face this year, none of those challenges are as top of mind as disease. One of the myths to unpack is whether post-infection control is the most cost-effective and efficient solution for your crop. It’s time to crack wheat disease control wide open.


Debunking the post-infection myth
Diseases stress the plant, limit photosynthesis and reduce yield potential. But how do those diseases take root and wreak havoc in your plant? Understanding the infection timeline is the first step toward debunking the post-infection disease control myth.


Once a pathogen spore reaches the plant, it breaks through the leaf cuticle, infects the plant and spreads under the leaf surface invisible to the eye. By the time the symptoms are visible on the leaf surface, the disease has had time to spread throughout the leaf.


Waiting to apply fungicides until after the symptoms are visible means the disease has more time to spread. Considering a fungicide application at herbicide timing and flag leaf timing can provide a protective barrier for the plant so its defenses are strong from the very beginning. This extra level of protection is especially critical for the flag leaf, as it produces most (60 to 70 percent) of the sugars and starches the plant uses for grain fill.


Less stress, more yield
Now that we’ve established that post-infection control might not be the best way to protect your crop, let’s look at the alternative. Preventative applications help keep your wheat healthy and green during those crucial development stages, as well as through disease and rough weather. When your wheat spends less time fighting off stressors, it spends more time producing yield. With early protection, the plant can utilize nitrogen more efficiently and better withstand unanticipated environmental stresses.


With the potential for better grain fill with a plant that hasn’t had to fight off stressors and disease, it seems like this myth is effectively busted.


Preventative = proactive
Preventative fungicide applications at the proper timing can help growers fight off diseases like powdery mildew, tanspot provides and Septoria. Nexicor™ Xemium® brand fungicide provides proven residual control, consistent and strong resistance management while keeping your crop’s leaves greener longer with BASF’s Plant Health benefits.


Rather than being reactive when disease rears its ugly head in your crop, give your plant the tools it needs to fight back from the very beginning. While post-disease control might seem like the most cost-efficient option, the myth-busting truth is that protecting the plant before it experiences stress and disease can boost your return on investment with increased yields at harvest.


To learn more, talk with your BASF representative, or visit


Always read and follow label directions.

Nexicor is a trademark and Xemium is a registered trademark of BASF. © 2019 BASF Corporation. All rights reserved.


About BASF’s Agricultural Solutions division
With a rapidly growing population, the world is increasingly dependent on our ability to develop and maintain sustainable agriculture and healthy environments. Working with farmers, agricultural professionals, pest management experts and others, it is our role to help make this possible. That’s why we invest in a strong R&D pipeline and broad portfolio, including seeds and traits, chemical and biological crop protection, soil management, plant health, pest control and digital farming. With expert teams in the lab, field, office and in production, we connect innovative thinking and down-to-earth action to create real world ideas that work – for farmers, society and the planet. In 2018, our division generated sales of €6.2 billion. For more information, please visit or any of our social media channels.


About BASF

BASF Corporation, headquartered in Florham Park, New Jersey, is the North American affiliate of BASF SE, Ludwigshafen, Germany. BASF has more than 20,000 employees in North America and had sales of $19.7 billion in 2018. For more information about BASF’s North American operations, visit


At BASF, we create chemistry for a sustainable future. We combine economic success with environmental protection and social responsibility. The approximately 122,000 employees in the BASF Group work on contributing to the success of our customers in nearly all sectors and almost every country in the world. Our portfolio is organized into six segments: Chemicals, Materials, Industrial Solutions, Surface Technologies, Nutrition & Care and Agricultural Solutions. BASF generated sales of around €63 billion in 2018. BASF shares are traded on the stock exchange in Frankfurt (BAS) and as American Depositary Receipts (BASFY) in the U.S. Further information at