Page Banner

United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Methods in Weed Ecology: Glue Retains Seeds in Shatter-Prone Seedheads

Authors
item Forcella, Frank
item Amundson, Gary

Submitted to: Weed Technology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: June 10, 2003
Publication Date: April 1, 2004
Citation: FORCELLA, F., AMUNDSON, G.B. METHODS IN WEED ECOLOGY: GLUE RETAINS SEEDS IN SHATTER-PRONE SEEDHEADS. WEED TECHNOLOGY. 2004. V. 18. P. 183-185.

Interpretive Summary: Researchers who study weeds often need to estimate the number of seeds produced by these plants. These estimates help researchers judge the long-term effects of current control practices. Unfortunately, estimating seed production of weeds is considerably more difficult than determining seed yield of crop plants. The difficulty arises because almost all weeds, unlike crops, are prone to shattering. Thus, any single measurement of seed production of a weed plant will have error associated with immature seeds or seeds already lost through shattering of the seedhead. This problem was solved by applying cheap non-toxic glues to seedheads immediately before initial seed maturation. Such glues reduced seed losses of redroot pigweed to less than 5% of total seed production compared to 12 to 14% for untreated plants. These results can be used by other weed researchers who desire to measure seed production of weeds with shatter-prone seedheads.

Technical Abstract: The difficulty of measuring fecundity of weeds with shatter-prone seeds can be overcome by post-anthesis application of non-toxic glues to seedheads. Such glues reduced seed losses of redroot pigweed to <5% of total seed production compared to 12 to 14% for untreated plants.

Last Modified: 4/16/2014
Footer Content Back to Top of Page