For a detailed account of the managment of Cyperus rotundus please read: Cyperus rotundus (Purple Nutsedge) Management Information. The information in this document is summarised below.
In agricultural fields, both purple and yellow nutsedge species reproduce primarily by underground tubers (Wills 1987). Management of nutsedges should focus on depleting tuber reserves and suppressing tuber multiplication (Bangarwa et al. 2008).
A Risk assessment of Cyperus rotundus for the Pacific region was prepared by Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER); the result is a score of 13, meaning the species is likely to be of high risk in the Pacific.
Approximately 95% of purple nutsedge tubers are confined to the top 12 cm of soil (Siriwardana and Nishimoto 1987, in Bangarwa et al. 2008), making shallow tillage an effective method of reducing tuber multiplication. Tillage should be done at frequent intervals (eg: three weekly) (Benedixen and Stroube 1977, McGiffen et al. 1997, in Bangarwa et al. 2008).
Nutsedges are capable of penetrating mulch with a thickness of four times that currently used in commercial vegetable production (Henson and Little 1969, in Webster 2005a). Plastic mulches are used in commercial vegetable gardens for suppressing weeds by providing a physical barrier (Bangarwa et al. 2008). Soil solarization, a method of increasing soil temperature using polyethylene mulch, has proved effective against many weeds when using clear film (Horowitz et al. 1983, in Bangarwa et al. 2008).
Glyphosate and paraquat are commonly used nonselective herbicides for controlling weeds in vegetable rows, especially those systems with mulch-covered beds. Glyphosate is translocated through chains of purple nutsedge tubers, which reduces tuber viability and production (Doll and Piedrahita 1982; Zandstra et al. 1974, in Webster et al. 2008).
The taxonomic isolation of the species from crop plants of importance makes it an ideal target for biocontrol (Ellison & Barreto 2004). Most of the biological control work undertaken so far has involved insect natural enemies with little success (Julien and Griffiths 1998, in Ellison & Barreto 2004). The mycoherbicide Dactylaria higginsii is a biological control fungus against purple nutsedge; repeated applications of D. higginsii provided 90% purple nutsedge control (Kadir et al. 2000, in Yandoc et al. 2006).
Use of Allelopathic Plants:
The use of allelopathic plants for weed management is an important tool in organic production systems and is gaining importance in the absence of synthetic fumigants. Plants belonging to the Brassicaceae family are known to exhibit allelopathic weed suppression (Boydston & Hang 1995, Krishnan et al. 1997, Vaughn & Boydston 1997, in Bangarwa et al. 2008). Turnip is a glucosinolate-producing Brassicaceae that has been used for weed suppression in bell pepper (Norsworthy et al. 2007).
Methyl bromide has been a critical component nutsedge management (Julian et al. 1998, Ragsdale & Wheeler 1995, Schneider et al. 2003, in Webster 2005a). However, the use of methyl bromide as a pre-plant pest management tool was (scheduled to be) abolished in 2005 (Webster 2005b). This increases the complexity of pest management. Future pest management systems will need to incorporate a combination of tactics to manage nutsedges in crop production (Cardina et al. 1999, Patterson 1998, in Webster 2005a).
Location Specific Management Information
Cyperus rotundus is listed as a 'Noxious weed' in Arkansas (USDA-NRCS, 2008).
Cyperus rotundus is listed as a 'B list (noxious weed)' in California (USDA-NRCS, 2008).
Biocontrol:Athesapeuta cyperi Marshall (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) was released in 1981 as a biocontrol agent against C. rotundus and probably failed to establish (Fowler et al. 2000). Larvae feed internally and adults feed externally on foliage (Fowler et al. 2000).
Cyperus rotundus is listed as a '"A" designated weed and Quarantine weed' in Oregon (USDA-NRCS, 2008).
Glyphosate is the most widely used herbicide for the control of purple nutsedge although, under certain conditions, glyphosate application in cotton may lead to fruit shedding and yield reduction (Viator et al. 2004, in Iqbal Cheema & An 2008). There is no selective post emergence herbicide available in Pakistan to control purple nutsedge in cotton crops. Moreover, the cost of using herbicides to control weeds is increasing and is rapidly becoming beyond farmers’ affordability (Iqbal Cheema & An 2008). The use of chemicals for weed control is under community challenge due to concerns with human and environmental health (Duke et al. 2001, in Iqbal Cheema & An 2008). Therefore, alternatives for safe, cheap and effective control of purple nutsedge in cotton crops are urgently required in Pakistan (Iqbal Cheema & An 2008).
The use of chickens and geese to control nutgrass Cyperus rotundus has also been promoted in Palau and the United States (PestNet 2009).
Cyperus rotundus is listed as a 'Quarantine weed' in Oregon (USDA-NRCS, 2008).
1. Bangarwa, S.K., Norsworthy, J.K. Jha, P., Malik, M. 2008. Purple nutsedge (Cyperus rotundus) management in an organic production system, Weed Science 56(4): 606-613.
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5. Cullen, J.M., Briese, D.T. Kriticos, D.J., Lonsdale, W.M., Morin, L. and Scott, J.K. eds, 2004. Proceedings of the XI International Symposium on Biological Control of Weeds. CSIRO Entomology, Canberra, Australia, 648 pp.
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Summary: Abstract: Field studies were conducted from 1993 to 1995 to evaluate MON-12051 for turfgrass tolerance and control of yellow and purple nutsedges. The availability of herbicides for selective control of these weeds in turfgrass is limited. A sulfonylurea compound, MON-12051, has recently been developed for selective control of the nutsedges in turfgrass. When MON-12051 was applied at 0.07 to 0.14 kg ai/ha, the injury to Kentucky bluegrass, tall fescue, bermudagrass, and zoysiagrass was slight, with a maximum of 10% injury. At these rates, MON-12051 outperformed both bentazon and imazaquin in controlling yellow and purple nutsedges. Averaged over all tests 6 wk after treatment, yellow nutsedge control with MON-12051 was 83%. Control averaged 44% during the same period when treated with bentazon, whether applied once at 2.24 kg ai/ha or twice at 1.12 kg ai/ha. Purple nutsedge control averaged 96% when treated with MON-12051 in Kentucky bluegrass, while control was 42% with imazaquin applied at 0.19 and 0.43 kg ai/ha.
7. E.N. Rosskopf, C.B. Yandoc, J.B. Kadir & R. Charudattan. 2004. Evaluation of Dactylaria higginsii as a component in an integrated approach to pest management. In: Proceedings of the XI International Symposium on Biological Control of Weeds (eds Cullen, J.M., Briese, D.T. Kriticos, D.J., Lonsdale, W.M., Morin, L. and Scott, J.K.), pp. 351–352. CSIRO Entomology, Canberra, Australia.
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11. IUCN/SSC Invasive Species Specialist Group (ISSG)., 2010. A Compilation of Information Sources for Conservation Managers.
Summary: This compilation of information sources can be sorted on keywords for example: Baits & Lures, Non Target Species, Eradication, Monitoring, Risk Assessment, Weeds, Herbicides etc. This compilation is at present in Excel format, this will be web-enabled as a searchable database shortly. This version of the database has been developed by the IUCN SSC ISSG as part of an Overseas Territories Environmental Programme funded project XOT603 in partnership with the Cayman Islands Government - Department of Environment. The compilation is a work under progress, the ISSG will manage, maintain and enhance the database with current and newly published information, reports, journal articles etc.
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