By Thomas Lichtensteiger, Sustainable Plant Systems major
Also known as horse weed, marestail is a broad leaf weed in grain crops. It is practically nuisance in soybeans that can get up to 6 feet tall if not controlled.
This weed can be chemically or mechanically controlled. However, because it grows as a basal rosette you must make sure to get the whole root base in order to kill it if using a mechanical system of control. Anything that will kill a broadleaf can be sprayed to kill it.
There is one problem with this weed. In the year 2000 it was first report of it being resistant to glyphosate. This caused a problem that if it was in in a soybean field traited to being tolerant of glyphosate then it would just laugh and keeping growing spreading the resistant population of the weed.
Some advice on how to manage this resistant weed:
- Crop rotation with a non-broadleaf crop to allow use of an herbicide with a different mode of action
- Planting a glufosinate resistant soybean instead thus allowing for the destruction of the resistant marestail population and help increase yield.
This blog post was an assignment for Societal Issues: Pesticides, Alternatives and the Environment (PLNTPTH 4597). The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the class, Department of Plant Pathology or the instructor.