Production of wheat in Ethiopia is under danger from wheat stem rust, which is brought on by the disease Puccinia graminis f.sp. tritici and has resulted in a yield loss of 100%. An investigation was conducted in a hotspot area (Debere Zeit, Ethiopia) to evaluate the status of Ethiopian durum wheat cultivars for their level of stem rust resistance in the field. During the main seasons of 2017, 2020, and 2021, 34 durum wheat varieties with three susceptibility checks were examined. Terminal Rust Severity (TRS), Coefficient of Infection (CI) and Area under Disease Progress Curve (AUDPC) were used to measure stem rust field resistance. Analysis of all disease parameters was carried out using R studio. Due to their low levels of AUDPC, ACI, and TRS values combined with MR infection type, two commercial varieties (Oda and Tob-66) may have a significant resistance gene(s) and seven varieties (Boohie, Kilinto, Ginchi, Robe, Toltu, Lelisso, and Bekelcha) showed a moderate level of field resistance with MR to MRMS responses and may have adult plant resistance mediated by minor resistance genes. Stem rust was found to affect 73.5% of the Ethiopian durum cultivars. Therefore, this study suggests that the national breeding effort should focus on local durum cultivars rather than the ones that were imported.
Key words: Field resistance, durum wheat, stem rust, Puccinia graminis f.sp tritici.
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