Following early indications of a major yellow rust outbreak and high susceptibility of meg-cultivar Cham-8, the Syrian Agricultural Research Programme in collaboration with ICARDA undertook a massive rust survey effort in 2010. A total of 546 fields were surveyed, covering all the major wheat growing areas in the country. Yellow rust was recorded on 235 of the fields surveyed, with moderate or high severity (>20%) reported on more than 50% of these fields. The disease was widespread, but high incidence and severity was apparent in the North-east adjacent to the Turkish and Iraqi borders and also in the areas around Aleppo.
Conditions in 2010 were favourable for rusts in general, with leaf rust also widespread. Leaf rust was recorded on 245 fields. Highest incidence and severity was observed in the western areas.
Stem rust was recorded on only 11 fields, predominantly in western coastal areas, west of Hamah and Homs.