Barnyardgrass is one of the most problematic weeds in Arkansas, and with the documentation of herbicide-resistant biotypes, there is a need to gain a detailed understanding of its ecology. In particular, knowledge on barnyardgrass seedbank size and emergence pattern is vital. An extensive seedbank survey was carried out in 2008 in 12 counties in eastern Arkansas to determine barnyardgrass seedbank size across the region. There was a great variability in seedbank size with a maximum of 215,000 seeds m−2. Among the fields surveyed, barnyardgrass seedbank was found only in 7% of the cotton fields, while it was 22 and 20%, respectively, for rice and soybean. To examine the emergence pattern of barnyardgrass, experiments were conducted in Rohwer (two sites), Stuttgart (one site), and Fayetteville (one site), Arkansas in 2008 and 2009. In each site, barnyardgrass emergence was quantified from naturally occurring seedbanks. Barnyardgrass exhibited an extended period of emergence with days to 100% emergence ranging from 99 to 165 across sites and years. Nevertheless, effective management may be achieved by targeting the peak emergence periods, which range from mid-April to mid-June in Arkansas. The four-parameter Weibull model provided a better fit to the cumulative emergence data. However, the thermal time (growing degree days, GDDs) or hydrothermal time (HTT) models did not predict barnyardgrass emergence any better than calendar days, perhaps because of the inherent variations associated with natural seedbanks. This study establishes seedbank size and general emergence pattern for barnyardgrass in Arkansas. Additionally, these results will be useful for parameterizing herbicide-resistance simulation models for barnyardgrass.
Nomenclature: Barnyardgrass, Echinochloa crus-galli (L.) Beauv. ECHCG; rice, Oryza sativa L.; cotton, Gossypium hirsutum L.; soybean, Glycine max (L.) Merr.