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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Conservation Systems Research for Improving Evnironmental Quality and Producer Profitability

Location: National Soil Dynamics Laboratory

Title: Cover crop use for weed management in Southern reduced-tillage vegetable cropping systems

Authors
item Price, Andrew
item Norsworthy, J -

Submitted to: Weed Technology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: August 30, 2012
Publication Date: February 14, 2013
Repository URL: http://handle.nal.usda.gov/10113/56942
Citation: Price, A.J., Norsworthy, J.S. 2013. Cover crop use for weed management in Southern reduced-tillage vegetable cropping systems. Weed Technology. 27(1):212-217.

Interpretive Summary: With growing agricultural demands from both conventional and organic systems comes the need for sustainable practices to ensure long-term productivity. Implementation of reduced- or no-till practices offers a number of environmental benefits for agricultural land and maintains adequate yield for current and future production. Concerns over satisfactory pest control options, weed control in particular, have contributed to the slow adoption of conservation practices in many areas. To identify effective, alternative weed management options for use in conservation systems, research in the Southeast has continued to evaluate the use of cover crops in conjunction with reduced-tillage practices. A number of cover crop species, including cereal grains, legumes, and Brassicaceae species, that have potential to suppress weeds through direct crop interference or allelopathic potential have been investigated. Many recent research projects in the Midsouth and Southeastern U.S. have assessed the success of cover crops in reduced-tillage row crop settings with promising outcomes in some systems. However, continued research is necessary to identify appropriate cover crop and tillage systems for use in other agricultural settings, such as vegetable crops and organic production systems.

Technical Abstract: With growing agricultural demands from both conventional and organic systems comes the need for sustainable practices to ensure long-term productivity. Implementation of reduced- or no-till practices offers a number of environmental benefits for agricultural land and maintains adequate yield for current and future production. Concerns over satisfactory pest control options, weed control in particular, have contributed to the slow adoption conservation practices in many areas. To identify effective, alternative weed management options for use in conservation systems, research in the Southeast has continued to evaluate the use of cover crops in conjunction with reduced tillage practices. Recent investigations have examined a number of cover crop species and associated allelopathic properties that may aid weed suppression including cereal grains, legumes, and brassica species. Many recent research projects in the Mid-South and Southeast US have assessed the success of cover crops in reduced-tillage row crop settings with promising outcomes in some systems. However, continued research is necessary to identify appropriate cover crop and tillage systems for use in a variety of agricultural settings, such as vegetable and organic systems.

Last Modified: 9/1/2014
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