Print version ISSN 0100-8358
GHEREKHLOO, J. et al. Multispecies weed competition and their economic threshold on the wheat crop. Planta daninha [online]. 2010, vol.28, n.2, pp.239-246. ISSN 0100-8358. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0100-83582010000200002.
Two field experiments were conducted to evaluate the effects of multispecies weed competition on wheat grain yield and to determine their economic threshold on the crop. The experiments were conducted in 2002, on two sites in Iran: at the Agricultural Research Station on Ferdowsi University of Mashhad (E1) and on the fields of Shirvan's Agricultural College (E2). A 15 x 50 m area of a 15 ha wheat field in E1 and a 15 x 50 m area of a 28 ha wheat field in E2 were selected as experimental sites. These areas were managed like other parts of the fields, except for the use of herbicides. At the beginning of the shooting stage, 30 points were randomly selected by dropping a 50 x 50 cm square marker on each site. The weeds present in E1 were: Avena ludoviciana, Chenopodium album, Solanum nigrum, Stellaria holostea, Convolvulus spp., Fumaria spp., Sonchus spp., and Polygonum aviculare. In E2 the weeds were A. ludoviciana, Erysimum sp., P. aviculare, Rapistrum rugosum, C. album, Salsola kali, and Sonchus sp. The data obtained within the sampled squares were submitted to regression equations and weeds densities were calculated in terms of TCL (Total Competitive Load). The regression analysis model indicated that only A. ludoviciana, Convolvulus spp. and C. album, in E1; and A. ludoviciana, S. kali, and R. rugosum, in E2 had a significant effect on the wheat yield reduction. Weed economic thresholds were 5.23 TCL in E1 and 6.16 TCL in E2; which were equivalent to 5 plants m-2 of A. ludoviciana or 12 plants m-2 of Convolvulus spp. or 19 plants m-2 of C. album in E1; and 6 plants m-2 A. ludoviciana, 13 plants m-2 S. kali and 27 plants m-2 R. rugosum in E2. Simulations of economic weed thresholds using several wheat grain prices and weed control costs allowed a better comparison of the experiments, suggesting that a more competitive crop at location E1 than at E2 was the cause of a lower weed competitive ability at the first location.
Keywords : weed interference; competition; grain yield; mathematical regression.