Evaluation of electrical and mechanical Palmer amaranth (Amaranthus palmeri) management in cucumber, peanut, and sweetpotato
Moore, L. D. D., Jennings, K. M. M., Monks, D. W. W., Boyette, M. D. D., Leon, R. G. G., Jordan, D. L. L., … Chang, P. (2023, January 22). WEED TECHNOLOGY.
Abstract Field studies were conducted to assess the efficacy of physical weed management of Palmer amaranth management in cucumber, peanut, and sweetpotato. Treatments were arranged in a 3 × 4 factorial in which the first factor included a treatment method of electrical, mechanical, or hand-roguing Palmer amaranth control and the second factor consisted of treatments applied when Palmer amaranth was approximately 0.3, 0.6, 0.9, or 1.2 m above the crop canopy. Four wk after treatment (WAT), the electrical applications controlled Palmer amaranth at least 27 percentage points more than the mechanical applications when applied at the 0.3- and 0.6-m timings. At the 0.9- and 1.2-m application timings 4 WAT, electrical and mechanical applications controlled Palmer amaranth by at most 87%. Though hand removal generally resulted in the greatest peanut pod count and total sweetpotato yield, mechanical and electrical control resulted in similar yield to the hand-rogued plots, depending on the treatment timing. With additional research to provide insight into the optimal applications, there is potential for electrical control and mechanical control to be used as alternatives to hand removal. Additional studies were conducted to determine the effects of electrical treatments on Palmer amaranth seed production and viability. Treatments consisted of electricity applied to Palmer amaranth at first visible inflorescence, 2 wk after first visible inflorescence (WAI) or 4 WAI. Treatments at varying reproductive maturities did not reduce the seed production immediately after treatment. However, after treatment, plants primarily died and ceased maturation, reducing seed production assessed at 4 WAI by 93% and 70% when treated at 0 and 2 WAI, respectively. Treatments did not have a negative effect on germination or seedling length.