Emergence and seed persistence of Echinochloa colona, Urochloa panicoides and Hibiscus trionum in the sub-tropical environment of north-eastern Australia
Steve WalkerA, Hanwen WuB and Kerry BellA
A Agri-Science Queensland, Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation, PO Box 2282, Toowoomba, Queensland 4350, Australia.
B Industry and Investment NSW, Wagga Wagga, New South Wales 2650, Australia.
Better understanding of seed-bank dynamics of Echinochloa colona, Urochloa panicoides and Hibiscus trionum, major crop weeds in sub-tropical Australia, was needed to improve weed control. Emergence patterns and seed persistence were investigated, with viable seeds sown at different depths in large in-ground pots. Seedlings of all species emerged between October and March when mean soil temperatures were 21-23°C. However, E. colona emerged as a series of flushes predominantly in the first year, with most seedlings emerging from 0-2 cm. Urochloa panicoides emerged mostly as a single large flush in the first two years, with most seedlings emerging from 5 cm. Hibiscus trionum emerged as a series of flushes over three seasons, initially with majority from 5 cm and then 0-2 cm in the later seasons. Longevity of the grass seed was short, with <5% remaining after burial at 0-2 cm for 24 months. In contrast, 38% of H. trionum seeds remained viable after the same period. Persistence of all species increased significantly with burial depth. These data highlight that management strategies need to be tailored for each species, particularly relating to the need for monitoring, application times for control tactics, impact of tillage, and time needed to reduce the seed-bank to low numbers.
Keywords: Emergence patterns, seed persistence, awnless barnyard grass, liverseed grass, bladder ketmia.
Plant Protection Quarterly (2010) 25 (3) 127-132.