Interaction phenotypes between soybean and Sclerotinia sclerotiorum observed in controlled and field environments often do not correlate. Resistant and susceptible accessions were selected to study light intensity as a variable that influences interaction phenotype. Objectives were to investigate whether light intensity within a controlled environment influences the ability to: i) distinguish resistant and susceptible accessions; ii) predict field interaction phenotypes; and iii) determine whether the method used for disease assessment influences the outcome of results. Six accessions were evaluated in growth chamber and field disease nursery trials. Five environments ranging from 146 to 434 μmol·m-2·s-1 of photosynthetically active radiation were established in the growth chamber. Inoculum was delivered to cut petioles at the R1 growth stage and interaction phenotypes were assessed for 11 days. For field trials, individual plants were rated at growth stage R7. The breeding line W04.1002 had less disease than NK S19-90 in field environments. Rank correlations of field and light environment interaction phenotypes indicate that light intensity affected the prediction of field performance. Evaluations conducted at 337 μmol·m -2·s-1 of light were most predictive of field interaction phenotypes (rs = 0.83 to 0.94; P = 0.05 to < 0.005). Controlling light intensity is critical to facilitate the identification of resistance to S. sclerotiorum in soybean.
- White mold