Susie Sprague talking to a farmer out in the field.

Susie loves working in the field with farmers and other scientists.

Dr Susie Sprague: caring for canola

Dr Susie Sprague is studying effective farm management in relation to Blackleg - a plant disease that targets canola crops.

  • 1 December 2005 | Updated 17 March 2014

In this article

  1. Overview
  2. Publishing History


Page 1 of 2

Current activities

When you spread margarine on your toast in the morning or cook a stir-fry meal, be thankful for people like Research scientist Dr Susie Sprague.

Dr Sprague is investigating possible pests and disease threats to canola in dual-purpose cropping (grain and graze).

While undertaking field trials Dr Sprague hopes to identify canola cultivars suitable for dual-purpose use in different environments and farming systems, such as high early biomass production, good blackleg resistance, regrowth potential after grazing and high yield.


Dr Sprague grew up on her parents’ hobby farm just out of Horsham in Western Victoria. 

Her interest in agricultural science was a result of spending holidays working at the local agricultural institute, while studying a Bachelor of Arts and Science at LaTrobe University in Melbourne.

In 2007 Dr Sprague completed her PhD at the University of Melbourne and CSIRO Plant Industry, in which she explored the extent to which Blackleg (Leptosphaeria maculans) caused root rot in canola, particularly in mixed farming systems.


In 2011 Dr Sprague and the HRZ dual-purpose cropping team won the CSIRO Plant Industry Teams award.

See a list of scientific papers published by Dr Sprague on the next page.