Auburn study makes strides toward eradicating cogongrass

Auburn University College of Agriculture associate professor and Extension specialist Stephen Enloe, along with Nancy Loewenstein, School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences research fellow, published a new study that reports significant progress in the fight against cogongrass. Cogongrass is ranked as the seventh worst invasive plant species worldwide and is both a significant economic and ecological threat to much of Alabama. These results of this study offer land managers several viable options in controlling the troublesome weed.

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Invader Batters Rural America, Shrugging Off Herbicides

In the New York Times, August 11, 2014

By Michael Wines

The Terminator — that relentless, seemingly indestructible villain of the 1980s action movie — is back. And he is living amid the soybeans at Harper Brothers Farms.

About 100 miles northwest of Indianapolis, amid 8,000 lush acres farmed by Dave Harper, his brother Mike and their sons, the Arnold Schwarzenegger of weeds refuses to die. Three growing seasons after surfacing in a single field, it is a daily presence in a quarter of the Harper spread and has a foothold in a third more. Its oval leaves and spindly seed heads blanket roadsides and jut above orderly soybean rows like skyscrapers poking through cloud banks. It shrugs off extreme drought and heat. At up to six inches in diameter, its stalk is thick enough to damage farm equipment.

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Herbicide-resistant weeds: How Australian wheat farmers turned the tide in their favor

While U.S. farmers have been grappling with herbicide-resistant weeds for the past few years, Australian wheat farmers have been battling them since the 1980s. According to a news story in Science magazine, Australian farmers are beginning to incorporate non-chemical weed control strategies into their farming practices—and finding that they are effectively controlling the weeds. Yet weed scientists caution farmers to practice integrated weed management and not rely on one single method.

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Change and IPM: Scenario for the future?

The following article appeared in IPMNet News:

Are changes inevitable for current IPM practices? Several recent papers unquestionably avow that IPM change is in the wind that is drifting, albeit slowly and unevenly, across the entire globe.

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Specialty Crop Farmers Face Weed Battles

Ever wonder what it takes to grow strawberries or blueberries? Or what kinds of challenges growers might face when they grow spinach? Fruit, vegetables, nuts, herbs and even landscape plants are in a unique group of their own, called “specialty crops.” Specialty crop growers face issues not experienced by growers of large-acre crops like cotton, soybeans or corn.

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Does Herbicide Use Encourage “Superweeds”?

When Roundup® entered the market in the early 1970s, it seemed to be an herbicide dream come true. Inexpensive, effective and non-persistent in the environment, glyphosate, the main ingredient in Roundup®, gave most users few things to complain about. Roundup® was cheaper than many other herbicides, so farmers could use it throughout the growing season with little economic impact. Farmers also enjoyed weed-free fields, and with the introduction of Roundup Ready crops in the 1990s, spraying weeds in developing fields became easier. National Park Service staff even use glyphosate to kill invasive weeds in the forest because it effectively controls vegetation and has low mammalian toxicity.

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