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IPMwise: A Decision Support System for Multispecies Weed Control in Cereal Crops

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Abstract

Integrated weed control is mandatory in the current legislative framework for sustainable plant protection programmes. The advent of synthetic pesticides in the 1950s allowed farmers to simplify cropping systems and forego more complicated crop protection strategies, especially in cereal production. Moreover, the awareness of the necessity to decrease pesticide use has been raised considerably since the mid-1980s in Europe. In this work, a Danish Decision Support System (DSS) for Field-Specific Crop Management is presented. This DSS, known as Crop Protection Online (CPO) and later IPMwise, optimizes herbicide weed control by providing recommendations of specific herbicide solutions to achieve a required control level. It has been developed since the 1980s, and the actual version (IPMwise) has recently been adapted to the edaphic and climatic conditions of Spain.

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... IPMWise is a DSS that optimizes active ingredients and dosages according to the actual weed species and spraying conditions for each specific field. As an average of four countries, herbicide average savings between 20 and 50% can be expected for maintaining the efficacy levels, and it can be used to generate variable rate spraying maps [44]. It is important to highlight that, for the majority of crops, chloroacetamides are the key active ingredients that have pre-emergence and can residually control annual grass weeds. ...
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IntroductionWeed floraGrowth stageweeds and weed densityAlternative approaches to studying the influenceclimatic conditionsHerbicide mixturesCrop competitivenessConclusions
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Lolium rigidum is an obligately cross-pollinated, genetically diverse species and an economically important, herbicide resistance-prone weed. Our previous work has demonstrated that recurrent selection of initially susceptible L. rigidum populations with low herbicide rates results in rapid herbicide resistance evolution. Here we report on the mechanisms endowing low-dose-selected diclofop-methyl resistance in L. rigidum. Results showed that resistance was not due to target-site ACCase mutations or overproduction, or differential herbicide leaf uptake and translocation. The in vivo de-esterification of diclofop-methyl into phytotoxic diclofop acid was rapid and similar in resistant versus susceptible populations. However, further metabolism of diclofop acid into non-toxic metabolites was always faster in resistant plants than susceptible plants, resulting in up to 2.6-fold lower level of diclofop acid in resistant plants. This corresponded well with up to 2-fold higher level of diclofop acid metabolites in resistant plants. The major polar metabolites of diclofop acid chromatographically resembled those of wheat, a naturally tolerant species. Clearly, recurrent selection at reduced herbicide rates selected for non-target-site-based enhanced rates of herbicide metabolism, likely involving cytochrome P450 monooxygenses. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
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Busi R, Gaines T, Walsh MJ & Powles SB (2012). Understanding the potential for resistance evolution to the new herbicide pyroxasulfone: field selection at high doses versus recurrent selection at low doses. Weed Research52, 489–499. Pyroxasulfone is a new pre-emergence herbicide that provides effective control of Lolium rigidum, including populations with evolved resistance to multiple herbicide modes of action. Prior to its commercialisation, the potential of resistance evolution was examined with two separate studies: (i) a field screening with a high pyroxasulfone dose causing mortality >99.999% of 100 million L. rigidum herbicide-susceptible individuals to establish the frequency of major gene resistance mechanisms and (ii) a 3-year low-dose recurrent selection experiment of a herbicide-susceptible (S) and a multiple herbicide-resistant (MR) L. rigidum population. The field screening indicated that no major-effect resistance genes were present in 100 million L. rigidum individuals. By contrast, pyroxasulfone resistance was obtained by recurrent low-dose pyroxasulfone selection of multiple herbicide-resistant L. rigidum. The multiple-resistant MR population showed a clear capacity to evolve pyroxasulfone resistance with >30% plant survival at 240 g ha−1 (2.4-fold the recommended rate) after three generations of recurrent pyroxasulfone selection. For the first time, information regarding the potential for resistance evolution is available prior to herbicide commercialisation. Persistent pyroxasulfone use at low dose has the potential to rapidly lead to herbicide resistance evolution in L. rigidum field populations. Effective stewardship programmes should be developed to encourage pyroxasulfone use at the full label rate to minimise the possibility of rapid low-dose-induced resistance evolution and to ensure pyroxasulfone sustainability.
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A Danish decision support system (DSS) named Crop Protection Online (CPO) for integrated management of weeds in cereals and beet has been developed during the past 20 years. CPO is based on a model that runs in three main steps: model step 1 quantifies the level of weed control needed on a field level, model step 2 selects candidate herbicides and calculates dose rates to meet the need, and model step 3 calculates tank mixtures of herbicides with two to four mixing components, if advantageous. CPO has been developed in cereals and beet, and various prototype versions have been validated in 1679 field tests. CPO secured yield potentials, and the level of residual weeds was not increased when compared with reference treatments. The potential of CPO to reduce herbicide use has been observed in all model crops, but the potential was greatest in cereals. In spring cereal field trials highly infested with weeds, the present version of CPO suggested 35% of one full herbicide dose on average and in winter cereals CPO suggested 44% on average of one full dose. The results from validation trials demonstrate that CPO is capable of suggesting robust treatment options with a low input of herbicides. The system architecture of CPO has been exported to Poland and the Baltic countries, and the system is expected to be suitable for export to other countries too.
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Gonzalez-Andujar JL, Fernandez-Quintanilla C, Bastida F, Calvo R, Izquierdo J & Lezaun JA (2011). Assessment of a decision support system for chemical control of annual ryegrass (Lolium rigidum) in winter cereals. Weed Research51, 304–309. Field studies were conducted at five locations in North and East Spain to evaluate the agronomic, economic and environmental implications of a decision support system (LOLIUM-PC) for herbicide control of Lolium rigidum in winter cereals. The chemical control treatments evaluated were as follows: (i) LOLIUM-PC-based recommendations, (ii) full herbicide dose (standard farmer practice) and (iii) half herbicide dose. Results indicate that there were no statistically significant differences, within sites, between treatments with respect to weed density, crop yield and economic return. On average, LOLIUM-PC resulted in less herbicide application compared with the full herbicide dose treatment. This also was true in three of five localities for the half-dose treatment. The results of this research indicate that LOLIUM-PC provides a flexible tool for recommending less herbicide than other herbicide decision systems, adequate weed control and similar crop yields to those obtained with the standard farmer practice (full dose) in Spain.
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Evolution of herbicide resistance in weeds is a growing problem across the world, and it has been suggested that low herbicide rates may be contributing to this problem. An individual-based simulation model that represents weed population dynamics and the evolution of polygenic herbicide resistance was constructed and used to investigate whether using lower herbicide rates or standard rates at reduced efficacy could reduce the sustainability of cropping systems by causing faster increases in weed population density as herbicide resistance develops. A number of different possible genetic bases for resistance were considered, including monogenic resistance and polygenic resistance conferred by several genes. The results show that cutting herbicide rates does not affect the rate at which weed densities reach critical levels when resistance is conferred exclusively by a single dominant gene. In some polygenic situations, cutting herbicide rates substantially reduces sustainability, due to a combination of faster increase in resistance gene frequency and reduced kill rates in all genotypes, while in other polygenic situations the effect is small. Differences in sustainability depend on combined strength of the resistance genes, variability in phenotypic susceptibility and rate delivered, level of control due to alternative measures, and degree of genetic dominance and epistasis. In the situation where resistance can be conferred by both a single dominant major gene or a number of co-dominant minor genes in combination, the difference made by low rates depends on the relative initial frequency of the major and minor genes. These results show that careful consideration of herbicide rate and understanding the genetic basis of resistance are important aspects of weed management.
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