Transcript Weed Management - cultivatingsuccess.org
Sustainable Weed Management Strategies Sustainable Small Acreage Farming and Ranching Know your Weeds ID your weeds in your field Be sure you want to get rid of it “Weeds are plant we have not yet found a use for.” They do have a role: –Holding water –Creating organic matter –Providing cover –Habitat for beneficial insects Tools for Control Exclusion –Don’t bring weed seeds onto the farm Nutrients brought onto the farm –Raw manure will have seeds Mulches –Don’t use hay –Straw is better Tools for Control Instead of manure – use compost Turn the pile often to get the temp even throughout and kill seeds Be careful of source material –Malva sp. resistant to heat What can I compost? Animal manures Straw, hay Vegetable matter Yard debris Wood shaving/chips Newspaper Fruit and vegetable wastes Organic Production Compost non-animal materials Plant residues, etc No specific composting regulations Organic Production Compost with animal materials • Initial Carbon to Nitrogen ratio 25:1 – 40:1 • In vessel or covered 131-170oF, 3 days, All portion of pile meets this temperature. • Turned windrow 131-170oF, minimum 15 days with 5 turns. Don’t let weeds go to seed! Early cycle weed control Is it worth continued harvesting from a field to justify continued weed management? – Hand weeding is expensive $200-$700/Ac Culitvating Expensive to control in row Cultivate on both sides of row Precision planter Get a uniform stand Shallow planting – Deeper the planting, the longer for germination Distance between row – Shade out weeds – Plant dense - set up a bed like system Cover crop the year before Use cover crop for weed suppression Shallow tillage – Brings smallest amount weeds to the top Transplants Give 4+ week jump on weeds –Plant at the right planting density can give you weed free plots Irrigation Drip irrigation is more water efficient Also by directing water to the crop it minimizes weed germination and reduces need to cultivate Timing of Cultivation Cultivate as soon as you can – Small weeds easier than big weeds to remove Do not irrigate right after cultivation Depth of cultivation – Depends on weed species Solarizing the soil Cultivate soil Irrigate soil completely Put plastic over the soil – Weed get cooked Soil gets up to 120 degrees F Solarizing the soil (cont.) Bacteria fungi die and release nutrients Cooler climates two layers of plastic – Have PVC between layers – create dead air space Needs to be on for at least 30 days during the heat of the summer Weed control with herbivores Rangeland or extensive pasture land Large populations distributed (often dropped by airplane) Takes time… Hylobius sp. Equipment A large part of controlling weeds is recruitment of the appropriate technology The following is a short survey of the available equipment. Hand Tools Hand Tools Weed Badger Three point hitch mounted. separate hydraulically driven rotary head Weed control for perennial plants Flamer Flame engineering kit Perennial crop model for weed control in berms Different models available for beds or rows. Flamers Steamers Spring Tooth Cultivator Specially suitable for weeds with underground rhizomes – Bring rhizomes to surface and causes them to desiccate Timing is critical Bushhog Rotary mower Cutting cover crop Mowing weeds before setting seeds Basket Weeder Budghing Corp Newly planted transplants Weed seedling control Timing critical Annual sowthistle: Sonchus oleraceus L. Description: Basal leaves are on stalks, upper leaves clasp the stem. Leaf shape, seeds, and flowers have some resemblance to dandelion. Cultural Control methods: Stale seedbeds, crop rotation, and any other treatment that reduces the spread and production of seeds are helpful. The method for a stale seedbed treatment: prepare the beds, water to encourage the weed seeds to germinate, and then kill by shallow tillage or herbicide application. Then plant the crop. Rotating to a cool season crop other than lettuce will help. Preplant cultivations, a dry soil mulch thrown over the seed, and deep plowing (inverting the soil to a depth of 16 inches will provide some control.