Weed biology and ecology can help every farmer become a better weed manager. This guide is the result of a series of winter meetings attended by Michigan farmers, MSU Extension agents, and research scientists. It brings together field-tested experience from successful growers and Extension agents and insights distilled from more than 50 years of weed science research.
Since the introduction of the IPM concept in the early 1970s, there have been repeated calls in the Weed Science literature for the corresponding development of an integrated approach to weed management (IWM). The majority of IWM publications have focused on spray thresholds or means of improving herbicide efficacy, with only a handful investigating new, non-chemical, tools for weed management or ways of integrating existing tools. In this publication, the authors provide several types of information to support IWM.
First, they develop a weed biology and ecology context in which to ground an IWM approach to weed management. Such information includes weed life histories, seed bank dynamics, modes of dispersal, effects of soil characteristics upon weeds, and the relation between cropping system characteristics and weed ecology. Second, they provide examples of new tools and means of integrating these with existing tools. Finally, they provide profiles for 12 economically important weed species in the North Central region, with information on biology and management for each species.
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This material is based upon work that is supported by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, U.S. Department of Agriculture through the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.