Nematode Management in Field Crops

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Plant parasitic nematodes can be highly damaging to crops and reduce yields. Aboveground signs and symptoms of nematode damage in a field include patches of poor growth/yield, high incidence of soilborne diseases, and stunting, yellowing, wilting, or dying plants. Below ground signs and symptoms include stubby roots, root proliferation or abnormal branching, stunted roots, root rot, or the presence of galls (root-knot nematode) or cysts (soybean cyst nematode) on the roots. Approaches to management of nematodes depend on the types and numbers of nematodes present, so sampling fields for nematodes is a necessary first step in developing a management strategy. 

Hillary L. Mehl
Virginia Cooperative Extension