Field studies were conducted at two North Carolina locations to determine the effect of interference between pale smartweed and cotton on plant growth and productivity. Pale smartweed remained shorter than cotton until at least 70 d after cotton planting. However, pale smartweed grew over twice as tall as cotton and produced considerable dry biomass by cotton harvest. Pale smartweed biomass per plant was not affected by weed density up to 3.5 plants m−1 of row when grown with cotton. Cotton competition reduced pale smartweed dry biomass per plant at least 400%. The relationship between pale smartweed and cotton percent yield loss was described by the rectangular hyperbola model with the asymptote (coefficient a) constrained to 100% maximum yield loss. The estimated coefficient i (yield loss per unit density as density approaches zero) was 29 ± 4 and 23 ± 4 in 1998 and 2000, respectively. Pale smartweed achene production was also described by the hyperbolic function. Estimated achene production of smartweed at 1 plant m−1 cotton row was 63,000 and 25,000 achenes m−2 in 1998 and 2000, respectively.
Nomenclature: Pale smartweed, Polygonum lapathifolium var. lapathifolium L. POLPE; cotton, Gossypium hirsutum L. ‘Stoneville BXN 47’.