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Rotation Affects Downy Brome (Bromus tectorum) in Winter Wheat (Triticum aestivum)

  • Robert E. Blackshaw (a1)

Abstract

Downy brome control in winter wheat is often inadequate. The effects of three crop rotations and two tillage intensities on downy brome populations and associated crop yields were determined in an experiment at Lethbridge, Alberta from 1987 to 1993. Downy brome densities in continuous winter wheat increased from 24 to 970 plants/m2 between 1988 and 1993; and were often higher with zero tillage. Inclusion of fallow or spring canola in rotation with winter wheat suppressed downy brome densities to less than 55 and 100 plants/m2, respectively, over the six years. In continuous winter wheat, yields decreased as downy brome densities increased progressively over years, indicating that monoculture winter wheat production will not be viable in regions where downy brome is prevalent unless effective herbicides are developed. In the more arid areas of the Canadian prairies, a winter wheat-fallow rotation may be most suitable but in higher precipitation areas, a winter wheat-canola rotation is a viable alternative. Crop rotation is a key component of an improved management system for control of downy brome.

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Rotation Affects Downy Brome (Bromus tectorum) in Winter Wheat (Triticum aestivum)

  • Robert E. Blackshaw (a1)

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