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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: CONSERVATION SYSTEMS RESEARCH FOR IMPROVING ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY AND PRODUCER PROFITABILITY

Location: National Soil Dynamics Laboratory

Title: Weed control in conservation agriculture

Authors
item Price, Andrew
item Kelton, Jessica -

Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: October 21, 2010
Publication Date: February 1, 2011
Citation: Price, A.J., Kelton, J. 2011. Weed control in conservation agriculture. In: Soloneski and Larramendy, editors. Herbicides, Theory, and Application. Rijeka, Croatia: Intech Press. p. 3-16.

Interpretive Summary: An increasing number of highly efficacious herbicide options, paired with tillage operations, have allowed agricultural producers in developed countries to significantly increase crop yields while reducing physical, and monetary, inputs into a cropping system. Continuation of these practices that rely on intense soil disturbance, however, have helped fuel concerns over agricultural sustainability in light of the severe soil degradation that occurs under these conditions. In response to continued soil depletion and other environmental impacts from agricultural production, conservation agriculture has been promoted as a means of maintaining high crop productivity and increasing economic potential while preserving natural resources and limiting future environmental damage. To achieve goals proposed with conservation agriculture, innovative weed control strategies including chemical methods have and will continue to be an essential component in the development of sustainable agricultural practices.

Technical Abstract: Prior to the introduction of the selective herbicide, 2,4-D (2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid), in the 1940’s, weed control in agricultural crops was primarily achieved through mechanical cultivation of the soil. Since that time, an increasing number of highly efficacious herbicide options, paired with tillage operations, have allowed agricultural producers in developed countries to significantly increase crop yields while reducing physical, and monetary, inputs into a cropping system. Continuation of these practices that rely on intense soil disturbance, however, have helped fuel concerns over agricultural sustainability in light of the severe soil degradation that occurs under these conditions. In response to continued soil depletion and other environmental impacts from agricultural production, conservation agriculture has been promoted as a means of maintaining high crop productivity and increasing economic potential while preserving natural resources and limiting future environmental damage. To achieve goals proposed with conservation agriculture, innovative weed control strategies including chemical methods have and will continue to be an essential component in the development of sustainable agricultural practices.

Last Modified: 9/1/2014
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