Animals, Agriculture & Food
Disease Resistant Alfalfa Populations
Inventors: Craig Grau
The Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF) is seeking commercial partners interested in several populations of alfalfa that are resistant to soil fungi that cause root rot.
Overall yields of alfalfa, a primary forage crop in Wisconsin, have declined steadily due to a variety of major pathogens, including Verticillium, Phytophthora and Aphanomyces. Aphanomyces and Phytophthora are both soil fungi that cause root rot.
A UW-Madison researcher has now developed several populations of alfalfa that exhibit a high level of resistance to Aphanomyces Race 1 and Race 2 and Phytophthora medicaginis. The populations have been selected for several traits related to disease resistance and plant longevity. Two of the populations are very competitive with commercial varieties as forage crops. The other populations are currently undergoing field tests and show yields comparable to commercial lines. These populations may be valuable themselves as commercial varieties or they may serve as a source of Race 2 resistance for other commercial lines.
- Production of disease resistant alfalfa
- Resistant to Aphanomyces Race 1 and Race 2 and Phytophthora medicaginis
- Varieties can be used commercially on their own
- Varieties can be used as germplasm for alfalfa seed companies to obtain resistance to Aphanomyces Race 2