Natalgrass is an invasive species that has become increasingly problematic in natural areas in Florida and other subtropical and tropical regions around the world. Natalgrass is a prolific seed producer, but little information is available regarding its seed biology and ecology. Research was conducted to determine levels of seed dormancy and to examine the effects of light, temperature, pH, water stress, and depth of burial on natalgrass seed germination. In addition, seed persistence under field conditions was examined both on the soil surface and while buried. Seeds appeared to undergo afterripening. Seed germination was not light dependent and occurred from 15 to 35 C, with optimum germination occurring at 20 to 35 C. Germination occurred at pH levels of 6 and 8 and was affected by water stress; no germination was observed at osmotic potentials less than −0.2 MPa. Seeds emerged from depths of at least 5 cm. Under field conditions, germination was reduced after burial; however, burial lengths of 3 to 15 mo did not result in differences in germination levels. Seedling numbers from seed deposits on the soil surface were greatly reduced after 1 mo, and no seedling emergence was observed after 4 mo.
Nomenclature: Glyphosate; natalgrass, Melinis repens (Willd.) Zizka RHYRE, formerly Rhynchelytrum repens (Willd.) C.E. Hubb.).