Crop Weed Control

Crop Weed Control

11:19 16 March in Business, Crop

Crop weed control is an issue that every farmer has to deal with. The original strategy for removal of these harmful plants was ploughing them out manually. Currently, most farmers use herbicides to kill off unwanted plant life surrounding their crops. These chemicals vary in environmental effects and are often cited in conjunction with many health problems. Now, there might be a new, more sustainable way for crops to withstand weed growth, thanks to a study done in Denmark.

The Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences at the University of Copenhagen have recently released the results of this study on their website. It found, that through simply rearranging crops weed growth is significantly reduced. By altering the crops’ sowing patterns the research suggests that crops like corn, grains and beans can potentially fight off weeds on their own.

Traditionally, crops are sown in rows. By planting crops closer together the study found that weed growth is reduced by 72%. This allows less room for weeds to grow and utilizes the “crops head start”. The study was conducted on wheat fields in Denmark against the weed Brassica napus. A separate study yielded similar results in corn fields in Columbia. Professor Jacob Weiner of the University of Copenhagen conducted the Danish study collaborating with Jannie Olson of Agronova University and HansWerner Griepentrog of the University of Hohenheim. Science furthering the sustainability practices such as these are critical for the evolution of the industry. Allowing farmers to move further away from pesticides and herbicides would have health benefits for the crops consumers.