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Herbicide resistance in the nursery crop production and landscape maintenance industries

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  29 June 2020

Jeffrey F. Derr
Professor, Virginia Tech, Hampton Roads AREC, Virginia Beach, VA, USA
Joseph C. Neal
Professor, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC
Prasanta C. Bhowmik
Professor, Stockbridge School of Agriculture, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MAUSA
E-mail address:


Weed management is an important issue for nursery crop and Christmas tree producers, as well as for those maintaining turfgrass or ornamental species in landscape plantings. PRE and POST herbicides are important weed management tools for these industries. Reports of herbicide-resistant weeds increased from fewer than 100 cases in 1985 to nearly 500 cases globally in 2019, including ones found in turfgrass or ornamental systems. The evolution, persistence, and management of herbicide-resistant weeds are an ongoing educational process. We must keep our stakeholders aware of improved weed control technology and provide them information on resistant weeds. A symposium at the 2019 Weed Science Society of America meeting was conducted with presentations and discussions by invited speakers in relation to current research and potential management strategies for resistant weeds in turfgrass, landscape ornamental, and nursery crops. To prepare for the symposium, a survey was prepared for nursery producers and landscapers on the issues of herbicide-resistant weeds and offsite movement of herbicides used to control herbicide-resistant weeds. Overall, most respondents felt herbicide-resistant weeds are a serious problem and most had personally observed herbicide resistance on properties they maintain. Resistance to glyphosate was the herbicide cited by most respondents, followed by resistance to triazine herbicides. Most felt their weed-control costs had increased because of resistant weeds. Approximately 20% of respondents had their operation affected by drift of herbicides from nearby farm fields, with most reporting no damage from spray or vapor drift, but a few reported greater than 50% of the crop damaged.

© Weed Science Society of America, 2020

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