Maize damage by corn smut fungus

Maize damage by corn smut fungus

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Caption: Corn smut. Maize showing damage caused by the corn smut fungus, Ustilago zeae. Corn smut occurs wherever maize (or corn, Zea mays) is grown throughout the world. The fungus damages plants by forming galls on the ears, stalks and leaves. Galls here (white) can be seen to have greatly damaged the ear of corn. Smut can seriously reduce crop yields, and is a major agricultural problem. It can be controlled (but not eradicated) by breeding or genetically engineering more resistant strains of corn. Modern fungicides are also of some use in preventing the spread of the fungus.

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Keywords: botany, corn, corn smut, corn smut fungus, crop damage, disease, diseases, fungus, maize, nature, pathogens, pathology, plant, plant pathology, smut, smut fungus, sweetcorn, ustilago zeae, zea mays

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