Herbicide Resistance Management for Common Lambsquarters and Horseweed

In the June 13th issue of the Wisconsin Crop Manager, I discussed herbicide resistance management for giant and common ragweed. This week’s featured herbicide resistance threats are common lambsquarters, Chenopodium album, and horseweed, Conyza canadensis. Weed scientists across the Midwest and Midsouth have identified eleven species of weeds that are of most concern for herbicide resistance because of their ability to compete with crops and to develop resistance to different herbicide sites of action. In 1979, University of Wisconsin weed scientists identified a population of common lambsquarters resistant to atrazine, a photosystem II inhibitor (www.weedscience.org). Lambsquarters populations in Michigan and Ohio have been found resistant to ALS inhibitors. In 2013, University of Wisconsin researchers identified horseweed plants resistant to glyphosate. Ohio and Delaware have horseweed populations resistant to both ALS inhibitors and glyphosate. Resistance to a single site of action has occurred in over twenty states.

Now is the time to start thinking about fall horseweed management. Emergence typically occurs in the early spring and again in the fall. Long-term no-till systems tend to harbor significant horseweed populations. Scouting in mid to late summer to locate any escapes from spring herbicide applications is important for herbicide resistance management and to decide whether to switch to a horseweed management program that includes both spring and fall control measures. Fall herbicide applications can help to reduce horseweed populations in problem fields. Also, if dandelion is an issue, then there are two reasons to consider fall herbicide applications. University of Wisconsin researchers found that fall dandelion control is best prior to next year’s corn crop. Their results are available as a slide presentation. Kevin Bradley at the University of Missouri has a video, less than five minutes, discussing the importance of application timing for horseweed control.

Ohio State and Purdue University have a great fact sheet on horseweed management. Also, the TakeAction website has a fact sheet with spring and fall herbicide recommendations.

Common lambsquarters can be difficult to manage because of an early and sustained emergence period, long seed persistence, and competitive ability. A 50 percent reduction of seed in the soil seedbank requires about 12 years and 78 years for a 99 percent reduction. Management goals should include: starting with a clean field, using a pre-emergence residual herbicide, scouting, and applying a post-emergence herbicide if necessary. For specific management recommendations, please consult the TakeAction fact sheet.

Post-emergence herbicides for corn and soybean

At this time of the year, integrated weed management programs focus on scouting and diversifying management practices including non-chemical methods and herbicide sites-of-action. For more information, please visit the United Soybean Board’s TakeAction website for field management guidelines and to learn more about herbicide sites of action. Michigan State University’s Weed Science website has detailed web pages on common weeds in annual crops with biological information and management recommendations. After each field season, the Herbicide Evaluation Program here at the university publishes efficacy data in a research report. Summary ratings for many weed species are located in “Pest Management in Wisconsin Field Crops” available as a free pdf or in print at Cooperative Extension’s Learning Store.

Scout your fields for weed seedlings this spring

Figure 1. A) Common lambsquarters, Chenopodium album; a soil sampler, one inch diameter, is in the foreground B) Horseweed (marestail), Conyza canadensis; C) Giant ragweed, Ambrosia trifida, with seed capsule attached; D) Giant ragweed seedlings.

Figure 1. A) Common lambsquarters; a soil sampler, one inch diameter, is in the foreground B) Horseweed (marestail); C) Giant ragweed, with seed capsule attached; D) Giant ragweed seedlings.

The fields may look cold, wet, and dormant this week but weeds were germinating in some fields in Janesville and Arlington last week. On April 17 at Janesville, common lambsquarters, giant ragweed, and horseweed were emerging (Fig. 1A-D). At Arlington in a plowed area, velvetleaf was emerging (Fig. 2). If you are leasing new land this year or want to get a head start on weed management, then scouting for weeds at the seedling stage before tillage can be a good way to assess density, the number of weeds in a given area, and for which weed species will likely be an issue around planting time. The Weedometer, developed by University of Wisconsin, can predict when weed species will likely be emerging for your location at http://weedecology.wisc.edu/weedometer/ . A guide to identifying the “Common Weed Seedlings of the North Central States” is available in pdf and print formats at Cooperative Extension’s Learning Store, or on the WCWS Weed info page.

Figure 2. Velvetleaf seedling.

Figure 2. Velvetleaf, Abutilon theophrasti, seedling.

Common ragweed confirmed ALS inhibitor-resistant in Brown County Wisconsin


Recently, Thomas Butts, a graduate research assistant, Vince Davis, and Dave Stoltenberg confirmed that a common ragweed population in Wisconsin is resistant to an ALS inhibitor. The full report is now available. For more information, please visit the WCWS documents page.

Triple threat herbicide resistant goosegrass

Researchers from the Australian Herbicide Resistance Initiative report on the first confirmed case of a weed, Indian goosegrass (Eleusine indica), resistant to three non-selective herbicides, glufosinate, glyphosate, and paraquat along with several ACCase inhibitor herbicides (Jalaludin et al., 2014). The goosegrass population was initially reported in Malaysia by a vegetable farmer and a planter from an oil palm nursery (Jalaludin et al. 2010).

In the United States, E. indica occurs in forty five of the fifty states. In Wisconsin, populations have been identified in the following counties: Columbia, Dane, Grant, Lafayette, Rock, Kenosha, and Milwaukee. The first documented case of herbicide resistant E. indica was from North Carolina in 1973 and the latest confirmation was in 2011 (Heap, 2015).

The amount of glufosinate to kill half of the tested resistant plants was equivalent to applying 40 fl oz per acre (e.g. Liberty 280 SL). The maximum rate for the season in corn is 36 fl oz per acre. The next generation of plants from the resistant population required 657 fl oz per acre of glyphosate (i.e. Roundup Powermax) to kill half of the tested population. These plants also were twice as resistant to paraquat compared to the susceptible plants. Half of the resistant population survived applications of the ACCase inhibitors- haloxyfop-P-methyl (e.g. Verdict) and fluazifop-P-butyl (e.g. Fusilade).

  1. Heap, I. 2015 The International Survey of Herbicide Resistant Weeds. Online. Available at www.weedscience.org
  2. Jalaludin, A.; Ngim, J.; Baki, BB.; Zazali, A. 2010 “Preliminary findings of potentially resistant goosegrass (Eleusine indica) to glufosinate-ammonium in Malaysia.” Weed Biology and Management 10: 256-260.
  3. Jalaludin, A.; Yu, Q.; Powles, S.B. 2014 “Multiple resistance across glufosinate, glyphosate, paraquat, and ACCase-inhibiting herbicides in an Eleusine indica population” Weed Research 55: 82-89.

For more information about herbicide resistance management, please visit our documents page, video page and/or the TakeAction on Weeds website.

Certified Crop Advisor Training Series


Here is another resource brought to you by University of Wisconsin Extension! Free, online certified crop advisor training videos are available now. In addition to CCA training, they are great for adding to your general knowledge about integrated pest management, soil science, and field and forage crops.

Vince Davis has created a series of weed science videos that can be accessed directly from the videos page.

Glyphosate resistance confirmed in two Wisconsin common waterhemp populations


Recently, Thomas Butts, a graduate research assistant, and Vince Davis confirmed two herbicide-resistant common waterhemp populations in Wisconsin. The full report is now available. For more information, please visit the WCWS documents page.

Palmer amaranth confirmed glyphosate-resistant in Dane County, Wisconsin


Thomas Butts, a graduate research assistant, and Vince Davis report a new confirmation of a glyphosate-resistant weed in Wisconsin. Their full report is available here. For more information, please visit the WCWS documents page.

Start the New Year with Herbicide Resistance Management


Here is another WCWS video discussing strategies to manage herbicide resistance. Get great weed control and save a bag of soybean seed by using a residual herbicide. Check out more WCWS videos at http://wcws.cals.wisc.edu/videos.