Next Article in Journal
Agronomic Performances of Organic Field Vegetables Managed with Conservation Agriculture Techniques: A Study from Central Italy
Previous Article in Journal
Liming Positively Modulates Microbial Community Composition and Function of Sugarcane Fields
Open AccessArticle

Designing Cropping Systems to Improve the Management of the Invasive Weed Phalaris minor Retz.

1
College of Plant Protection, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing 210095, China
2
Institute of Agricultural Environment and Resources Research, Yunnan Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Kunming 650205, China
3
Biotechnology and Germplasm Resources Institute, Yunnan Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Kunming 650205, China
4
Biology Department, Trinity Western University, 7600 Glover Road, Langley, BC V2Y 1Y1, Canada
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Agronomy 2019, 9(12), 809; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy9120809
Received: 20 October 2019 / Revised: 17 November 2019 / Accepted: 25 November 2019 / Published: 27 November 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Weed Science and Weed Management)
Because cropping systems can greatly affect the establishment and spread of alien species populations, the design of cropping systems to control invasive weeds is an important approach for invasive species management in agro-ecosystems to avoid excessive increases in other control measures such as herbicides. The annual weed Phalaris minor Retz. (P. minor) is one of the most troublesome invasive weed species of winter crops in Yunnan Province, China, but the development of cropping systems for ecological control of this weed have received limited research attention. Here, we studied seed dormancy, germination characteristics and reproductive responses of P. minor to various cropping systems to show how cropping systems could be better designed to control P. minor in China. Our research showed that cropping systems significantly affected seed dormancy in submerged paddy fields. Phalaris minor seed remained dormant and the germination rates (less than 10%) were significantly lower (p < 0.05) than in maize fields and dry, bare soil conditions. Wheat, faba bean and rapeseed crops had no significant influence (p < 0.05) on the seed germination rate of P. minor, but increasing soil depth significantly decreased (p < 0.05) the germination rate and germination index of this weed. Total biomass, spike biomass, spike number and seed number of P. minor were significantly reduced (p < 0.05) with increasing proportions of the three crops (wheat, faba bean and rapeseed), with rapeseed having the strongest inhibition effects among the three crops. The reproductive allocation and reproductive investment of P. minor were also significantly reduced (p < 0.05) in mixed culture with wheat and rapeseed. With increasing proportions of wheat or rapeseed, the specific leaf area of P. minor significantly increased (p < 0.05), but the reverse was true for leaf area and specific leaf weight. Moreover, the net photosynthetic rate, stomatal conductance and transpiration rate for P. minor also decreased significantly (p < 0.05) when grown with wheat or rapeseed. These results suggest that optimal cropping systems design could involve planting rapeseed in conjunction with deep plowing and planting rice (continuous submergence underwater) in summer. Such a system could reduce the field populations and seed bank of P. minor, thus providing a sustainable and environmentally friendly means of suppressing P. minor. View Full-Text
Keywords: Phalaris minor; cropping systems; ecological control; seed dormancy; seed germination; reproductive characteristics Phalaris minor; cropping systems; ecological control; seed dormancy; seed germination; reproductive characteristics
MDPI and ACS Style

Xu, G.; Shen, S.; Zhang, Y.; Clements, D.R.; Yang, S.; Li, J.; Dong, L.; Zhang, F.; Jin, G.; Gao, Y. Designing Cropping Systems to Improve the Management of the Invasive Weed Phalaris minor Retz.. Agronomy 2019, 9, 809.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Search more from Scilit
 
Search
Back to TopTop