Junglerice is one of the world's most problematic C4 grass weeds present in dry-seeded rice in many countries. A screenhouse study was conducted to determine the effect of four rice planting densities (0, 100, 200, and 400 plants m−2) and four nitrogen (N) rates (0, 50, 100, and 150 kg ha−1) on the growth and morphological plasticity of junglerice. Junglerice plant height was reduced by 15 to 35%, tiller number by 54 to 77%, leaf number by 61 to 85%, leaf area by 69 to 90%, leaf biomass by 63 to 88%, stem biomass by 70 to 92%, and inflorescence biomass by 66 to 94% at rice planting densities ranging from 100 to 400 plants m−2 relative to the junglerice plants grown alone. However, all these growth parameters increased with increasing N rates. Junglerice biomass increased by 125 to 472%, whereas rice biomass increased by 122 to 285% with the application of 50 to 150 kg N ha−1. Additional N favored junglerice biomass production relative to rice. Rice crop interference (200 to 400 plants m−2) reduced junglerice growth and biomass and overshaded the junglerice plants when no N was applied. Increasing N application resulted in taller plants and higher biomass of junglerice, while it reduced root-shoot weight ratio. These results suggest that increasing N rate increased the competitive ability of the junglerice over rice regardless of crop planting density. Information generated in this study could be useful in devising appropriate combinations of planting density and fertilizer management strategies for cultural junglerice management, particularly in situations where junglerice species are more responsive than rice to N.
Nomenclature: Junglerice, Echinochloa colona (L.) Link ECHCO; rice, Oryza sativa L. ORYSA.