Pratylenchus thornei reaches high population densities in non-irrigated annual cropping systems in low-rainfall regions of the Pacific Northwest. Two spring wheat varieties with different levels of tolerance and susceptibility to P. thornei were treated or not treated with aldicarb in three experiments. Grain yield was inversely correlated (P 0.05) with pre-plant populations of P. thornei in soil and with P. thornei density in mature roots. As population of P. thornei increased, yield of the moderately tolerant/moderately susceptible variety Krichauff was generally more stable than for the intolerant/susceptible variety Machete. The reproductive factor (Pf/Pi) was generally lower (P 0.05) for Krichauff than Machete. Aldicarb improved wheat yield (P 0.05) in highly infested fields by an average of 67% for Krichauff and 113% for Machete. Aldicarb increased (P 0.05) numbers of headed tillers, plant height, and grain test weight and kernel weight, and reduced (P 0.05) the density of P. thornei in mature wheat roots, variability in height of heads, and leaf canopy temperature. Aldicarb did not improve yield in a soil with a low population of P. thornei. This is the first report that P. thornei causes economic damage to wheat in the Pacific Northwest.
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