There has been a rapid, worldwide increase in oilseed rape production that has resulted in enormous intensification of oilseed rape cultivation, leading to tight rotations. This in turn, has caused an accumulation of pests as well as foliar and soil-borne diseases. Recently, clubroot has become one of the biggest concerns of oilseed rape growers. Clubroot is caused by the soil-borne protist Plasmodiophora brassicae Woronin. The pathogen may be present in groundwater, lakes, and irrigation water used in sprinkling systems. It can be easily transmitted from one field to another not only by water, but also by soil particles and dust transmitted by wind and on machinery. The aim of our overall study was to check for P. brassicae infestation of Polish agricultural soils. This paper presents the 2012 results of a study performed along the Polish-Ukrainian border in two provinces: Lublin (Lubelskie Voivodeship) and the Carpathian Foothills (Podkarpackie Voivodeship), in south-east Poland. Monitoring was done in 11 counties, including nine rural and two municipal ones. In total, 40 samples were collected, out of which 36 were collected from fields located in rural areas and four from municipal areas, with two per municipal region. Each sample was collected at 8-10 sites per field, using a soil auger. The biotest to detect the presence of P. brassicae was done under greenhouse conditions using seedlings of the susceptible Brassicas: B. rapa ssp. pekinensis and the Polish variety of oilseed rape B. napus cv. Monolit. Susceptible plants grown in heavily infested soils produced galls on their roots. A county was regarded as free from the pathogen, if none of the bait plants became infected. The pathogen was found in three out of 40 fields monitored (7.5%) in the Carpathian Foothill region. The fields were located in two rural counties. The pathogen was not found in Lublin province, and was also not detected in any of the municipal counties. The detection with a biotest was fully confirmed by PCR-based molecular detection of P. brassicae DNA in soil samples.
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