Special Issue "Sustainable Weed Control in the Agroecosystems"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Sustainable Agriculture".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 October 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Roberto Mancinelli
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Guest Editor
Department of Agriculture and Forest Sciences (DAFNE), University of Tuscia, 01100 Viterbo, Italy
Interests: crop production; crop protection; weed control; agricultural systems and management; environment and climate change in agriculture; greenhouse gas emissions
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Dr. Emanuele Radicetti
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Guest Editor
Department of Agriculture and Forest Sciences (DAFNE), University of Tuscia, 01100, Viterbo, Italy
Interests: crop management and production; weed management; weed community composition; integrated weed management (IWM); soil fertility and plant nutrition; sustainable cropping systems; environmental science
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

At present, agricultural production is essential for ensuring food security worldwide. Weeds are an important constraint to crop yield, and their management is crucial to avoid losses. The actual control means are not suitable for the concept of modern agriculture due to labor shortage, the environmental persistence of chemical means, health hazards, and herbicide-resistant weeds. Several means could be adopted for controlling weeds, such as improving tillage regimes, weed seed harvest, thermal means, biotechnological means, and precision farming. Unfortunately, no single strategy is completely efficient, and therefore an integrated approach could represent the key to success in weed management under sustainable agriculture. Indeed, the incorporation of a combination of weed management measures helps to sustain weed control systems over time and maintain farms’ ability to provide productive harvests while protecting the environment.

The main objective of the Special Issue is to publish original research, modeling approaches, and review papers addressing how weed management could be implemented in sustainable cropping systems across different environments, soils, and geographic locations.

To achieve this goal, Sustainability is encouraging researchers to submit relevant articles to this Special Issue. Therefore, manuscripts evaluating how innovative weed management strategies could support sustainable agriculture and improve crop productivity, nutrient dynamics, soil physical and biochemical properties, as well as biodiversity, weed dynamics, and weed species composition are welcome.

Prof. Dr. Roberto Mancinelli
Dr. Emanuele Radicetti
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • sustainable agriculture
  • integrated weed management
  • weed species composition
  • weed community dynamics
  • crop–weed competition
  • ecological intensification of cropping systems
  • weed seedbank
  • herbicide-resistant weeds

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Informal Seed Traders: The Backbone of Seed Business and African Smallholder Seed Supply
Sustainability 2020, 12(17), 7074; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12177074 - 30 Aug 2020
Cited by 3
Abstract
To work well and be sustainable, seed systems have to offer a range of crops and varieties of good quality seed and these products have to reach farmers, no matter how remote or poor they may be. Formal seed sector interventions alone are [...] Read more.
To work well and be sustainable, seed systems have to offer a range of crops and varieties of good quality seed and these products have to reach farmers, no matter how remote or poor they may be. Formal seed sector interventions alone are not delivering the crop portfolio or achieving the social and geographic breadth needed, and the paper argues for focus on informal seed channels and particularly on traders who move ‘potential seed’ (informal or local seed) even to high stress areas. This paper provides the first in-depth analysis on potential seed trader types and actions, drawing on data collected on 287 traders working in 10 African countries. The research delves into four themes: the types and hierarchies of traders; the technical ways traders manage seed using 11 core practices; the price differential of +50% of potential (local) seed over grain, and the pivotal roles which traders play in remote and crisis contexts. Traders are the backbone of smallholder seed security and need to be engaged, not ignored, in development and relief efforts. An action framework for leveraging seed trader skills is presented, with the paper addressing possible legal and donor constraints for engaging such market actors more fully. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Weed Control in the Agroecosystems)
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Open AccessArticle
How Do Intensification Practices Affect Weed Management and Yield in Quinoa (Chenopodium quinoa Willd) Crop?
Sustainability 2020, 12(15), 6103; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12156103 - 29 Jul 2020
Abstract
Quinoa cultivation is well-adapted to sustainable cropping systems, even if seed yield could be severely limited due to several constraints, such as weeds. Field trials were performed in Gorgan (Iran) to quantify the effects of agro-ecological service crops (rye, CCr; winter [...] Read more.
Quinoa cultivation is well-adapted to sustainable cropping systems, even if seed yield could be severely limited due to several constraints, such as weeds. Field trials were performed in Gorgan (Iran) to quantify the effects of agro-ecological service crops (rye, CCr; winter vetch, CCw; and no cover, CC0), tillage regimes (conventional tillage, CT; and no-tillage, ZT), and herbicide rates (100% rate, H100; 75% rate, H75; and without herbicide, H0). Weed characteristics and quinoa yield were measured. Quinoa seed yield was the highest in CCw-ZT-H100. Seed yield in H100 and H75 were higher compared with H0 (2.30 vs. 1.58 t ha−1, respectively). Under conventional tillage, 46% of weed seeds were observed in the 0–10 cm soil layer and 54% in 10–20 cm soil layers, respectively, while, under no-tillage, about 63% of weed seeds were located up to 10 cm of soil. Amaranthus retroflexus L. was the most abundant species. The total weed density was the lowest in CCr-ZT-H100 and tended to be higher in CC0 (30.9 plant m−2) and under CT (29.0 plant m−2). These findings indicate that cover crops have potential for managing weeds in quinoa; however, their inclusion should be supported by chemical means to maintain high seed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Weed Control in the Agroecosystems)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Barriers and Levers to Developing Wheat–Pea Intercropping in Europe: A Review
Sustainability 2020, 12(17), 6962; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12176962 - 26 Aug 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
Beyond the ecosystem benefits of diversification through wheat–pea intercropping, this review analyzes the barriers and levers to its adoption and diffusion. The present review shows that structuring the value chain around the products of this innovative cropping system faces a set of technical [...] Read more.
Beyond the ecosystem benefits of diversification through wheat–pea intercropping, this review analyzes the barriers and levers to its adoption and diffusion. The present review shows that structuring the value chain around the products of this innovative cropping system faces a set of technical (i.e., varietal selection, phytosanitary issue control, crop management sequence, collection management, and storage), economic (i.e., cost, price, market opportunities, and contracting), and public policy (i.e., subsidies for ecosystem services provided by intercropping) obstacles that contribute to its slow adoption and dissemination in Europe. However, the value chain resulting from the wheat–pea intercropping system has levers to be exploited at all levels, particularly in terms of its competitive advantages, ecosystem benefits, and superior product quality. The results of this review help to identify priorities that actors of the value chain can address to better focus their efforts on significant problems and solutions that can accelerate the adoption and dissemination of this agroecological system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Weed Control in the Agroecosystems)
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