Germination of weed seed and time of emergence are greatly affected by temperature. The effects of temperature on seed germination of tumble pigweed, prostrate pigweed, smooth pigweed, Palmer amaranth, Powell amaranth, spiny amaranth, redroot pigweed, common waterhemp, and tall waterhemp were examined under constant and alternating temperature regimens at 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, and 35 C. Averaged over all temperatures, alternating temperature regimens increased total germination of all species, except Powell amaranth, which germinated similarly under both constant and alternating temperatures. In addition, Powell amaranth seed exhibited the highest total germination across all temperatures compared with the other amaranth species. Prostrate pigweed seed demonstrated the lowest total germination. Optimal temperatures for maximum germination were greater than 20 C for all species, except prostrate pigweed. The alternating temperature regimen centering at 30 C was used to compare the germination rates of the nine species. Palmer amaranth and smooth pigweed attained complete germination on the first day. The rate of germination for these species was much more rapid than the other Amaranthus spp., which took 3 to 8 d to reach 50% germination.
Nomenclature: Common waterhemp, Amaranthus rudis Sauer AMATA; Palmer amaranth, Amaranthus palmeri S.Wats. AMAPA; Powell amaranth, Amaranthus powelli S.Wats. AMAPO; prostrate pigweed, Amaranthus blitoides S.Wats. AMABL; smooth pigweed, Amaranthus hybridus L. AMACH; spiny amaranth, Amaranthus spinosus L. AMASP; redroot pigweed, Amaranthus retroflexus L. AMARE; tall waterhemp, Amaranthus tuberculatus Sauer AMATU; tumble pigweed, Amaranthus albus L. AMAAL.