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Open AccessArticle

Is Pasture Cropping a Valid Weed Management Tool?

1
Instituto Nacional de Tecnología Agropecuaria (INTA)-Estación Experimental Agropecuaria Quimilí, Ruta Prov N° 6 km 9, Santiago del Estero, Quimilí 3740, Argentina
2
Instituto de Ciencias Agrarias (CSIC), Serrano 115B, 28006 Madrid, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Plants 2020, 9(2), 135; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9020135
Received: 30 December 2019 / Revised: 14 January 2020 / Accepted: 17 January 2020 / Published: 21 January 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Weed Ecology and Management)
The aim of the present work was to study the feasibility of pasture cropping under the Mediterranean conditions prevailing in central Spain and its potential as a weed management tool. Three cropping systems were assessed: conventionally grown winter barley and winter barley in pasture cropping with two perennial summer species, Cynodon dactylon and Eragrostis curvula. The results showed that the growth of these two species in a pasture cropping system was limited by the severe drought conditions and high temperatures present during the summer in some of the study years. Although there were no differences in the establishment of winter barley in any of the treatments assessed, pasture cropping reduced winter barley yields up to 50%–60% in years with low rainfall in spring. Regarding weed control, pasture cropping showed a significant suppression of the total weed density and number of weed species. As a conclusion, pasture cropping can be considered as a valid weed management tool. However, the economic feasibility of this system under the climatic conditions of central Spain (characterized by a high risk of severe summer droughts) is still not clear. The availability of supplemental irrigation may reduce competition between pastures and winter crops and ensure a profitable production of summer pastures. View Full-Text
Keywords: Intercropping; winter barley; Cynodon dactylon; Eragrostis curvula; no-tillage; weeds Intercropping; winter barley; Cynodon dactylon; Eragrostis curvula; no-tillage; weeds
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MDPI and ACS Style

Luna, I.M.; Fernández-Quintanilla, C.; Dorado, J. Is Pasture Cropping a Valid Weed Management Tool? Plants 2020, 9, 135. https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9020135

AMA Style

Luna IM, Fernández-Quintanilla C, Dorado J. Is Pasture Cropping a Valid Weed Management Tool? Plants. 2020; 9(2):135. https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9020135

Chicago/Turabian Style

Luna, Ignacio M.; Fernández-Quintanilla, César; Dorado, José. 2020. "Is Pasture Cropping a Valid Weed Management Tool?" Plants 9, no. 2: 135. https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9020135

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