Goosegrass is considered one of the most important grassy weeds of rice, particularly in rain-fed environments. Experiments were conducted in laboratory, screenhouse, and field to study the germination ecology of goosegrass seeds. In the laboratory, germination was greater at higher alternating temperatures (30/20 and 35/25 C) than at the lowest alternating temperatures (25/15 C). An after-ripening period of at least 3 mo was required to improve the germination of goosegrass. Germination was tolerant of salt stress but sensitive to a high degree of water stress. A pH range of 5 to 10 did not influence seed germination (92 to 95%). In the screenhouse study, seedling emergence of goosegrass was greatest (82%) for seeds placed on the soil surface, but decreased exponentially after that, no seedlings emerged at a burial depth of 8 cm. Seedling emergence and seedling dry matter declined markedly with the addition of crop residue to the soil surface at rates equivalent to 4 to 6 ton (t) ha−1. In the field, seedling emergence of goosegrass was greater under zero-till (ZT; 16 to 18%) than under minimum tillage (MINT; 8 to 11%). Because seedling emergence was greater from surface-sown seeds and emergence was favored by ZT, this species is likely to become a problematic weed in ZT systems. The information gained from this study could be used in developing effective weed management strategies.
Nomenclature: Goosegrass, Eleusine indica (L.) Gaertn. ELEIN; rice, Oryza sativa L.