Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)


Plants, Soils, and Climate

Committee Chair(s)

D. C. Tingey


D. C. Tingey


During recent years the principles of Mendelism have been used extensively in the production of the new types of plants possessing resistance to various diseases. Results of this mode of attacking the disease problem have been very favorable. Old varieties are gradually giving way to newer types equal to or exceeding in quality and productivity as well as possessing resistance to one or more diseases.

Loose smut (U. tritici) in wheat, while not as serious a problem in Utah as the covered smut (T. tritici), according to Tapke (14) has caused an average annual loss of between 50,000 and 100,000 bushels of wheat. these data shown in figure 1 are for the period 1917 to 1926, inclusive.

The various methods advocated for the control of loose smut (U. tritici), with the exception of the use of resistant varieties and hot water treatments, either have been impradtical of application or have been ineffective in control or both (14).

The modified hot water treatment of Freeman and Johnson (4), has generally been the method recommended. While this method is effective if properly executed, it is rather complicated and tedious to apply, especially for farmers who are not usually properly equipped. Because of this and the fact that the disease frequently escapes observation, seed treatment for the control of loose smut (U. tritici) is seldom practiced; as a result the smut is allowed to go unchecked. The development of a resistant variety possessing the adaptability and desirable characteristics of our locally-grown spring wheats would be a decided advantage to the farmers in combating the disease.