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Rigid ryegrass (Lolium rigidum Gaudin) is the most problematic weed in Australia, with evolved resistance to multiple herbicide sites of action. Selection pressure by cinmethylin (Group 30, a fatty-acid thioesterase inhibitor) has been limited, because few populations have been exposed to the herbicide since its introduction in 2019. In this study, we examined the sensitivity of L. rigidum populations to this new herbicide. From a screening of almost 500 field populations in 2020, 28 potentially resistant populations were further investigated in a dose–response experiment. Seedlings from five populations surviving treatments of 250 or 375 g ai ha−1 cinmethylin were grown to maturity and seeds were harvested. The level of resistance found among the five putative-resistant parental populations of L. rigidum was negligible. In one population, one round of selection with cinmethylin resulted in a 2-fold increase in the lethal dose causing 50% mortality in the progeny population, although this dose was still only one-sixth of the recommended field rate of cinmethylin. Having a unique site of action, cinmethylin is a viable preemergence herbicide option to control existing multiple-resistance populations of L. rigidum. Comprehensive field monitoring and recurrent selection studies under controlled environmental conditions are needed to better ascertain the risk of L. rigidum evolving a high level of resistance to cinmethylin, although current data suggest that this risk is relatively low.
Glufosinate is an effective postemergence herbicide, and overreliance on this herbicide for weed control is likely to increase and select for glufosinate-resistant weeds. Common assays to confirm herbicide resistance are dose–response and molecular sequencing techniques; both can require significant time, labor, unique technical equipment, and a specialized skillset to perform. As an alternative, we propose an image-based approach that uses a relatively inexpensive multispectral sensor designed for unmanned aerial vehicles to measure and quantify surface reflectance from glufosinate-treated leaf disks. Leaf disks were excised from a glufosinate-resistant and glufosinate-susceptible corn (Zea mays L.), cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.), and soybean [Glycine max (L.) Merr.] varieties and placed into a 24-well plate containing eight different concentrations (0 to 10 mM) of glufosinate for 48 h. Multispectral images were collected after the 48-h incubation period across five discrete wave bands: blue (475 to 507 nm), green (560 to 587 nm), red (668to 682 nm), red edge (717 to 729 nm), and near infrared (842 to 899 nm). The green leaf index (GLI; a metric to measure chlorophyll content) was utilized to determine relationships between measured reflectance from the tested wave bands from the treated leaf disks and the glufosinate concentration. Clear differences of spectral reflectance were observed between the corn, cotton, and soybean leaf disks of the glufosinate-resistant and glufosinate-susceptible varieties at the 10 mM concentration for select wave bands and GLI. Leaf disks from two additional glufosinate-resistant and glufosinate-susceptible varieties of each crop were subjected to a similar assay with two concentrations: 0 and 10 mM. No differences of spectral reflectance were observed from the corn and soybean varieties in all wave bands and the GLI. The leaf disks of the glufosinate-resistant and glufosinate-susceptible cotton varieties were spectrally distinct in the green, blue, and red-edge wave bands. The results provide a basis for rapidly detecting glufosinate-resistant plants via spectral reflectance. Future research will need to determine the glufosinate concentrations, useful wave bands, and susceptible/resistant thresholds for weeds that evolve resistance.
Horseweed [Conyza canadensis (L.) Cronquist] grows in one of two distinct growth phenotypes, “rosette” and “upright” growth types, and they have recently been observed co-occurring in Michigan fields. Previous research found that upright plants from two glyphosate-resistant populations were 3- and 4-fold less sensitive to glyphosate than their rosette siblings. Further experiments were conducted to investigate whether differential glyphosate sensitivity of the growth types was due to glyphosate retention, absorption, or translocation. The total amount of glyphosate retained on the C. canadensis leaf surface was similar for both growth types; however, on a per-weight and per-area bases, the upright growth type retained 21% and 18% less glyphosate, respectively. Glyphosate absorption was up to 85% at 168 h after treatment (HAT), and was not different between the rosette and upright growth types or between the susceptible (S) and resistant (R) biotypes. Additionally, there was no difference in translocation between the two growth types within each biotype at any time point. Interestingly, at 168 HAT, [14C]glyphosate translocation was higher in the S rosette compared with the two growth types from the R biotype; however, the S upright type was similar to both R growth types. Thus, glyphosate resistance in the R biotype may be due to an alternative mechanism rather than impaired translocation, which has been cited as the primary mechanism of glyphosate resistance in C. canadensis. These results suggest that reduced glyphosate retention on a per-weight and per-area bases of the upright growth type may contribute to increased glyphosate tolerance due to a diluted concentration of glyphosate in the plant. However, another factor is likely related to the mechanism of resistance within the R biotype, which is contributing to a 3-fold difference in glyphosate sensitivity between the two growth types, such as alterations in EPSPS gene expression or changes in undescribed metabolism genes.
The identification of herbicide tolerance is essential for effective chemical weed control. According to whole-plant dose–response assays, none of 29 pond lovegrass [Eragrostis japonica (Thunb.) Trin.] populations were sensitive to penoxsulam. The effective dose values of penoxsulam causing 50% inhibition of fresh weight (GR50: 105.14 to 148.78 g ai ha−1) in E. japonica populations were much higher than the label rate of penoxsulam (15 to 30 g ai ha−1) in the field. This confirmed that E. japonica was tolerant to penoxsulam. Eragrostis japonica populations showed 52.83- to 74.76-fold higher tolerance to penoxsulam than susceptible barnyardgrass [Echinochloa crus-galli (L.) P. Beauv.]. The mechanisms of tolerance to penoxsulam in E. japonica were also identified. In vitro activity assays revealed that the penoxsulam concentration required to inhibit 50% of the acetolactate synthase (ALS) activity (IC50) was 12.27-fold higher in E. japonica than in E. crus-galli. However, differences in the ALS gene, previously found to endow target-site resistance in weeds, were not detected in the sequences obtained. Additionally, the expression level of genes encoding ALS in E. japonica was approximately 2-fold higher than in E. crus-galli after penoxsulam treatment. Furthermore, penoxsulam tolerance can be significantly reversed by three cytochrome P450 monooxygenase (CytP450) inhibitors (1-aminobenzotriazole, piperonyl butoxide, and malathion), and the activity of NADPH-dependent cytochrome P450 reductase toward penoxsulam in E. japonica increased significantly (approximately 7-fold higher) compared with that of treated E. crus-galli. Taken together, these results indicate that lower ALS sensitivity, relatively higher ALS expression levels, and stronger metabolism of CytP450s combined to bring about penoxsulam tolerance in E. japonica.
Trichoderma polysporum (Link) Rifai HZ-31 fermentation broth was separated and purified by extraction, column chromatography, and high-performance liquid chromatography. Four monomer compounds with strong herbicidal activity were obtained: p-hydroxyphenyl-2,3-dihydroxypropyl ether, o-hydroxy-3-carbonyl-1-phenylpropanol, 1,8-propanediol o-xylene, and 2-3-dihydroxypropyl propionate. The biological activity verification test indicated that the four monomer compounds could inhibit the germination of wild oat (Avena fatua L.) and canola (Brassica napus L.) seeds. Of the four, compound 3 (1,8-propanediol o-xylene) had obvious inhibitory effects on the germination of A. fatua and B. napus seeds, with inhibition rates of 83.33% and 86.67%, respectively. Therefore, the identification of this monomer compound lays a foundation for the further development of a novel microbial herbicide by directly utilizing it and developing new derivatives with herbicidal functions as lead compounds.
Poppy (also common poppy or corn poppy; Papaver rhoeas L., PAPRH) is one of the most harmful weeds in winter cereals. Knowing the precise and accurate location of weeds is essential for developing effective site-specific weed management (SSWM) for optimized herbicide use. Among the available tools for weed mapping, deep learning (DL) is used for its accuracy and ability to work in complex scenarios. Crops represent intricate situations for weed detection, as crop residues, occlusion of weeds, or spectral similarities between crop and weed seedlings are frequent. Timely discrimination of weeds is needed, because postemergence herbicides are used just when weeds and crops are at an early growth stage. This study addressed P. rhoeas early detection in wheat (Triticum spp.) by comparing the performance of six DL-based object-detection models focused on the “You Only Look Once” (YOLO) architecture (v3 to v5) using proximal RGB images to train the models. The models were assessed using open-source software, and evaluation offered a range of results for quality of recognition of P. rhoeas as well as computational capacity during the inference process. Of all the models, YOLOv5s performed best in the testing phase (75.3%, 76.2%, and 77% for F1-score, mean average precision, and accuracy, respectively). These results indicated that under real field conditions, DL-based object-detection strategies can identify P. rhoeas at an early stage, providing accurate information for developing SSWM.
Competition between genotypes within a plant population can result in the displacement of the least competitive by more competitive genotypes. Although evolutionary processes in plants may occur over thousands and millions of years, it has been suggested that changes in key fitness traits could occur in as little as decades, with herbicide resistance being a common example. However, the rapid evolution of complex traits has not been proven in weeds. We hypothesized that changes in weed growth and competitive ability can occur in just a few years because of selection in agroecosystems. Seed of multiple generations of a single natural population of the grassy weed giant foxtail (Setaria faberi Herrm.) were collected during 34 yr (i.e., 1983 to 2017). Using a “resurrection” approach, we characterized life-history traits of the different year-lines under noncompetitive and competitive conditions. Replacement-series experiments comparing the growth of the oldest year-line (1983) versus newer year-lines (1991, 1996, 1998, 2009, and 2017) showed that plant competitive ability decreased and then increased progressively in accordance with oscillating selection. The adaptations in competitive ability were reflected in dynamic changes in leaf area and biomass when plants were in competition. The onset of increased competitive ability coincided with the introduction of herbicide-resistant crops in the landscape in 1996. We also conducted a genome-wide association study and identified four loci that were associated with increased competitive ability over time, confirming that this trait changed in response to directional selection. Putative transcription factors and cell wall–associated enzymes were linked to those loci. This is the first study providing direct in situ evidence of rapid directional evolution of competitive ability in a plant species. The results suggest that agricultural systems can exert enough pressure to cause evolutionary adaptations of complex life-history traits, potentially increasing weediness and invasiveness.
California is the top producer of almonds [Prunus dulcis (Mill.) D.A. Webb] worldwide, generating more than $6 billion in revenue in 2020; the European Union (EU) is the primary importer of California almonds. Weed control in almond orchards is an important part of the preharvest process, because weeds can interfere with harvest equipment and host diseases. Glyphosate and glufosinate are broad-spectrum herbicides commonly used for preharvest weed control. Global differences in maximum residue limits (MRLs) and regulated compounds can pose a challenge for growers who rely on broad-spectrum herbicides such as glyphosate and glufosinate for preharvest weed control. The EU MRL for glyphosate and total glufosinate is currently 0.1 mg kg−1. The U.S. MRL for total glyphosate is 1 mg kg−1, and total glufosinate is 0.5 mg kg−1. An 8-wk field experiment, from spray to harvest, was conducted in an 8-ha commercial orchard to evaluate the potential contribution of the preharvest herbicide treatment to low levels of herbicide residue in almonds. Then, the same batch of almonds was followed through a commercial processing facility to evaluate the potential movement of herbicide residues from soil, debris, and hulls to almond kernels during processing. Glyphosate was not detected in any almond kernel samples at the end of processing. A glufosinate metabolite, 3-(methylphosphinico)propionic acid (MPP), was detected in kernels at the end of processing at about 0.1 mg kg−1, which is above the EU MRL for total glufosinate. Almonds sampled directly from the tree, without any contact with soil, were found to have elevated MPP residues. This indicates glufosinate or MPP translocation may be a factor in low-level glufosinate residues detected in almonds in some EU exports.