Competition control is essential for successful eucalyptus plantation establishment, yet few selective herbicides have been identified. Five herbicides, flumioxazin, imazamox, imazapic, oxyfluorfen, and sulfometuron methyl, were evaluated at either pre- or post-weed emergence timing for selective weed control in the establishment of Eucalyptus benthamii, a frost-tolerant species showing promise for commercial plantations in the southeastern United States and southern Brazil. Herbicides were applied at two or three rates and compared to a non-treated control and to near-complete weed control obtained with repeated glyphosate directed sprays. Herbicides were most efficacious when applied prior to weed emergence, at 2 weeks after planting 16-week-old containerized eucalyptus seedlings. Pre-emergence imazapic treatments resulted in broad-spectrum and persistent weed control, with 77–82% bare-ground at 60 days after treatment, but both pre- and post-emergence applications of imazapic caused excessive eucalyptus injury at the highest rate tested. Imazapic, sulfometuron, and imazamox were most effective for grass control. Both timings of flumioxazin were effective for forb control at the early assessment. All pre-emergence treatments enhanced stem volume compared to the non-treated control, but post-emergence treatments did not, suggesting the need for early weed control to facilitate E. benthamii growth. Pre-emergence applications of medium and high sulfometuron, low imazapic, high imazamox, and high oxyfluorfen rates increased stem volume four-fold to six-fold compared to the non-treated control. Repeated glyphosate directed sprays increased stem volume nearly three-fold compared to the control. These results confirm one early report of flumioxazin effectiveness and identify imazamox and imazapic as new selective herbicides for eucalyptus culture.
New Forests – Springer Journals
Published: Mar 9, 2018
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