Yellow nutsedge infests a large number of hectares in the Treasure Valley of eastern Oregon and western Idaho. Much of its continued expansion appears to be related to onion production in the valley. Fall applications of metham often produce inconsistent results when used to control yellow nutsedge before planting an onion crop. Trials were conducted in the laboratory to determine the influence on yellow nutsedge control of metham dose, duration of exposure, temperature during exposure, and tuber conditioning by washing and chilling at 3 C. All factors influenced metham efficacy against yellow nutsedge tubers. The dose causing 50% reduction in sprouting tubers (I50) for metham ranged from 22 to 76 mg kg−1 of soil and was lower for conditioned tubers than nonconditioned tubers across all conditions, except when tubers were exposed at 25 C for 3 d. Nonconditioned tubers were unaffected by metham after 1 d exposure at 5 C. Increasing exposure temperature or increasing exposure duration decreased sprouting for nonconditioned tubers. As exposure duration and exposure temperature increased, differences among conditioned and nonconditioned tubers were less. Temperature and exposure duration affects metham efficacy against yellow nutsedge, and the condition of the tubers at the time of treatment also has a significant effect. Applications of metham at a time when yellow nutsedge tubers are not dormant may improve yellow nutsedge control.
Nomenclature: Metham; yellow nutsedge, Cyperus esculentus L.; onion, Allium cepa L.