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Seed bank biology of emerging weeds

Bhagirath Chauhan

Sudheesh Manalil

Widespread development of herbicide resistance in many Australian weed species has increased focus on integrated weed management (IWM) systems. These IWM systems require greater level of information on weed biology, including information on the longevity and general behaviour of weed seed-banks under local farming systems. Weed species can persist in farming systems through tolerance to weed control methods (e.g. herbicide resistance) or avoidance of control methods (e.g. delayed germination due to increased dormancy). While there is extensive information on herbicide resistance in Australian weed species, there has been little work on investigating changes in the behaviour of weed seed-banks in response to management practices. Obtaining information on dormancy patterns of emerging weed species as well as the level of persistence of weed seed-banks under current management systems would allow growers to make informed decisions about their weed management programs.


This project is undertaking research on these aspects of weed biology in important emerging weed species (turnip weed, common sowthistle, Mexican poppy, Australian bindweed, feathertop Rhodes grass, windmill grass, liverseed grass, sweet summer grass, bladder ketmia, caltrop, and button grass) in the northern region of Australia. Weed seeds are being collected from low and high rainfall regions.

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