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Evaluation of Legume Cover Crops and Weed Control Programs in Conservation-Tillage, Enhanced Glyphosate-Resistant Cotton

  • Jason K. Norsworthy (a1), Marilyn McClelland (a1), Griff Griffith (a1), Sanjeev K. Bangarwa (a1) and Joshua Still (a1)...


Research was conducted at Marianna, AR, for 2 yr to determine whether hairy vetch and Austrian winter pea cover crops would aid weed management programs in conservation-tilled, enhanced glyphosate-resistant cotton. Both cover crops were easily established and produced rapid growth in early spring, with biomass production of 435 to 491 g m−2 by Austrian winter pea and 415 to 438 g m−2 by hairy vetch. The effect of cover crops on weed control was short-lived in both years, with herbicide programs being the major determinant of weed control and seed-cotton yield. Averaged over cover crops, seed-cotton yields when the initial in-crop glyphosate application was delayed to the four-node cotton stage were up to 710 kg ha−1 less than in a PRE herbicide program. In 1 of 2 yr, seed-cotton yields were greater in PRE-treated plots compared with a program where initial weed management was delayed to the one-leaf stage of cotton. As a result of rapid decay of hairy vetch and Austrian winter pea biomass following cotton planting and the lack of adequate Palmer amaranth, pitted morningglory, and goosegrass control in the absence of herbicides, it appears there may be minimal weed management benefits from the use of hairy vetch and Austrian winter pea in Midsouth cotton production.

En Marianna, AR, se llevó al cabo una investigación de dos años para determinar si Vicia villosa y Pisum sativum utilizados como cultivos de cobertera, ayudarían en un programa de manejo de maleza en algodón mejorado resistente al glifosato, cultivado en labranza de conservación. Ambos cultivos de cobertera fueron fácilmente establecidos y tuvieron un rápido crecimiento al inicio de la primavera; Pisum sativum exhibió una producción de biomasa de 435 a 491 g m−2 y Vicia villosa de 415 a 438 g m−2. El efecto de cultivos de cobertera en el control de maleza tuvo una vida corta en ambos años, siendo los programas de herbicidas el factor determinante en el control de la maleza y en el rendimiento de semillas de algodón. Promediado a través de los cultivos de cobertera, cuando la aplicación inicial de glifosato en el algodón fue retrasada a la etapa del cuarto nudo, el rendimiento de sus semillas fue hasta 710 kg ha−1 menos que el observado en un programa utilizando herbicidas PRE. En uno de los dos años, los rendimientos de semilla de algodón fueron mayores en parcelas tratadas con PRE, en comparación con un programa donde el manejo inicial de la maleza fue retrasado a la etapa de una hoja de la planta. Como resultado de una rápida descomposición de la biomasa de Vicia villosa y Pisum sativum después de la siembra del algodón y de la carencia de un adecuado control de Amaranthus palmeri, Ipomoea lacunosa y Eleusine indica en ausencia de herbicidas, parece ser que hay mínimos beneficios en el manejo de la maleza con el uso de Vicia villosa y Pisum sativum, para la producción de algodón en la zona media-sur de los Estados Unidos.


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