Don’t let the last weed standing reproduce

News Staff's picture
Article Image Alt Text

Kochia is one of the weeds that has developed some herbicide resistance in Texas.

Article Image Alt Text

A small Palmer amaranth in the middle of two common water hemp plants. (Texas AgriLife Extension Service photo)

Herbicide weed resistance battle must be fought at different levels

When weeds begin showing resistance, it’s not a case of the herbicide changing the weed, it’s a simple “survival of the fittest” case, according to a Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service specialist.

Scott Nolte, Ph.D., AgriLife Extension weed specialist, College Station, said the common misconception is the herbicides cause changes. Instead, it’s mainly the inherited ability of a species to survive.

“The problem is these resistant plants become parents because they were not killed out,” Nolte said. “It’s more of a selection, because they were left.”

Building resistant weeds

Target-site mutation is the most common cause of herbicide resistance, he said. This is where a change at the target site prevents the herbicide from binding or otherwise disabling the action, thus preventing herbicidal activity.

To read more please log in or subscribe to the digital edition

Rate this article: 
No votes yet