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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Weed Management in a Legume-Cereal Cover Crop with the Rotary Hoe

Authors
item Boyd, Nathan
item Brennan, Eric

Submitted to: Weed Technology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: February 1, 2006
Publication Date: July 1, 2006
Citation: Boyd, N., Brennan, E.B. 2006. Weed management in a legume-cereal cover crop with the rotary hoe. Weed Technology. 20:733-737.

Interpretive Summary: Substantial weed growth can occur in legume-cereal cover crop mixes commonly grown on organic vegetable farms. In a 2 year study, we tested the effect of 0, 1, and 2 passes with a rotary hoe on weed control in a mixed cover crop of 10% rye, 15% common vetch, 15% purple vetch, 25% peas and 35% bell bean. Rotary hoeing occurred 14 to 15 days after planting in the 1 pass treatment, and 14 and 28 days after planting in the 2 pass treatment. Rotary hoeing did not affect total cover crop density or biomass, but reduced rye density and biomass in year 2. One pass reduced total weed density by 69% in year 1 and 49% in year 2. Rotary hoeing reduced seed production of the two predominant weed species by 80 to 95% in both years. Rotary hoe efficacy depended on weather conditions directly before and after cultivation.

Technical Abstract: Substantial weed growth can occur in legume-cereal cover crop mixes commonly grown on organic vegetable farms. A 2 yr study was conducted to test the effect of 0, 1, and 2 passes with a rotary hoe on weed control in a mixed cover crop of 10% rye, 15% common vetch, 15% purple vetch, 25% peas and 35% bell bean. Rotary hoeing occurred 14 to 15 days after planting (DAP) in the 1 pass treatment, and 14 and 28 DAP in the 2 pass treatment. Rotary hoeing did not affect total cover crop density or biomass in either yr, but reduced rye density and biomass in yr 2. One pass reduced total weed density by 69% in yr 1 and 49% in yr 2. A second pass did not affect weed density in yr 1 but reduced weed density an additional 33% in yr 2. One pass decreased weed biomass in yr 1 whereas 2 passes were required to reduce weed biomass in yr 2. Rotary hoeing reduced seed production of chickweed and shepherd’s purse, the two predominant weed species, by 80 to 95% in both years. Rotary hoe efficacy depended on weather conditions directly before and after cultivation.

Last Modified: 8/22/2014