Owen SD Wally, Ph.D.

Image Owen Wally
Field Crop Pathologist

My research program aligns with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's (AAFC) sector strategies to improve agricultural performance and reduce threats to the value chain. This work is predominately focused on root diseases of soybean and dry beans grown in Ontario, with main focuses on the Soybean Cyst Nematode, Sudden Death Syndrome of soybean, Phytophthothora Root Rot and various root roots on dry beans.  We are developing new management and detection techniques for analyzing risks for growers through determining the genetic structure of pathogen populations and agronomic practices to minizing the proliferation of these pathogens. This mitigation is done with close association with breeding programs. 

Current research and/or projects

Understanding the biological impact on suppressive soils toward Sudden Death Syndrome and Soybean Cyst Nematode on soybean. (Collaborative Framework with Grain Farmers of Ontario, 2021-2024)

Optimizing disease management strategies for white mould and bacterial blights of dry bean (Canadian Pulse Science Research Cluster, 2018 - 2023)

A new method for precise and reproducible phenotyping of Phytophththora sojae isolates in soybean (Canadian Field Crops Research Alliance Cluster, 2018 - 2023)

Develop food grade soybean varieties or germplasm for high yield, good quality or pest resistance (Canadian Field Crops Research Alliance Cluster, 2018 - 2023)

Dry bean disease screening and development of germplasm with disease resistance (Canadian Pulse Science Research Cluster, 2018 - 2023)

Evaluation of seed treament for control of soybean Sudden Death Sydrome in Ontario growing regions.(Collaborative Framework , 2022-2024)

Research and/or project statements

Developing a framework for tracking pathogen distribution of soil borne pathogens throughout Ontario.

Assessing soybean/edible bean  germplasm/varieties for tolerance to existing and emerging diseases.

Identification of best management practices for sustainable suppression of root and foliar diseases of soybean.

Monitoring of genetic change within endemic pathogen populations.

Education and awards

Ph.D., Plant Pathology, Simon Fraser University, Burnaby BC

M.Sc. Plant Physiology, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg MB

B.Sc. Hons, Genetics, University of Mantioba, Winnipeg MB

2020 Canadian Phytopathological Society, Outstanding Young Scientist Award

Key publications

  1. Presentation addressing current and historical impact of Soybean Cyst Nematode and Phytophthora sojae on it's impact on Ontario soybean production.

    2023 - View publication details

  2. Mcilveen E., Gillard C., Larsen, JL. and Wally OSD. Examination of Ontario adapted dry bean varieties for tolerance towards common pathotypes of Soybean Cyst Nematode (2023) Canadian Pulse Research Workshop, WIndsor, ON, Canada.

    2023 - View publication details

  3. Omoregie U., Wally OSD., and Pauls, PK. Resistance to bacterial brown spot in Adzuki bean (2023) Canadian Pulse Research Workshop, WIndsor, ON, Canada.

    2023 - View publication details

  4. Wu, L., Strelkov, SE., Kim, YM., Wally, O., and Wang, SF. Pathogenicity of Fusarium spp. associated with root rot and wilt of soybean and evaluation of cultivar resistance. Alberta Regional meeting of the Canadian Phytopathological society, Nov 3-4, 2022, Brooks, AB.

    2022 - View publication details

Research facility

2585 County Road 20
Harrow, ON N0R 1G0


Member, Ontario Soybean and Canola Council

Member, Ontario Pulse Crop Committee

Member, Canadian Phytopathological Society