Common ag weed…

Field pennycress-Thlaspi arvense-(cabbage family)is also known as stink weed(ya it does stink),fan weed,and french weed.The weed is considered either a winter or summer annuals that can grow up to .9m(3′) in fertile soil but most likely less than .6m(2′).The leaves are toothed with pointed leaves and the small white flowers are in clusters.The flowers can produce 20,000 seeds per plant. Stink weed is native to Eurasia-found in all of the U.S. and with distribution on 5 continents!You can find pennycress in the usual weed haunts:disturbed areas-one of my faves-pastures,croplands.Field pennycress may be common but as with a lot of weeds it has benefits to humans.According to ediblewildfood,com the leaves can be eaten raw or cooked and is suggested to get them before they flower.As always make sure you know what you are doing here.In addition to food, the weed is being grown for bio diesel as a sub for regular diesel(bio diesel is commomly made from used cooking grease).One more-bees love the nectar for the ones that are not endangered.

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pics by td-thanks to ipm.missouri.edu and ediblewildfood.com for help.thanks for reading.Happy Monday!

This just in..

No surprise here that automation is foraging ahead in every industry we all touch.The British company-AHDB Horticulture-is partially funding a project that will create an automated spot herbicide ejector.The machine is designed to distinguish weeds from crops as it sprays only the weed-missing the plant and soil.The tests say that the process will achieve 92% weed control and 94% less herbicide will be applied.Look for this machine in 2018.Thanks to agweb.com 01/10/17-“Robots:The Future of Weed Control”.

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Two weeds for Tuesday…

I going old school with these weeds and keeping it simple-you all know the Thoreau quote!These two weeds have been in my brain’s library since me and my brother ‘cut weeds out of beans” in my sister’s-affectionately known as MD-farm in the mid 60’s.Now this was before Round Up and when farmers cultivated their fields.Also better known as the mechanical method to rid the fields-soybeans that is-of weeds.Anyway we loved the job-no kidding!One of the weeds that invaded the beans was “button weed”.Also known as Velvetleaf-Abutilon theophrasti-that was introduced in the U.S. in the 1750 or so as a fiber crop.It is an annual producing 17,000 seeds!It is all over the place..We now we have another weed that invaded the bean field-hey we used hoes to cut the weeds-MD used a corn knife!She did not mess around.Some of the rows were .75 miles long by the way!Oh back to the weed.It was the Smartweed-polygonum pensylvanicum-that I remember as another bothersome weed in the beans.There are 200 species of this weed and the wildlife use it as a food source and the name comes from the juice which causes ‘smarting”.Thanks to my sister MD who is my weed mentor to this day-still livin’ on the farm-love ya!

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pic  by td-the button weed is in my tomato patch-container-and the smartweed is in my mint patch-hey I am serious when i say I let weeds grow!Research from Weeds-A Golden Book and Weeds of  North America.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Weed for your Wednesday…

One can conclude how popular a weed is by the number names it is known.This weed  has a few names as it’s handle.Horse Nettle-Solanum carolinense L.-is also known as:bull nettle,Carolina horse nettle.apple of Sodom(I need to google that one!),wild tomato,tread softly,just to name a few.Bull thistle is part of the nightshade family that includes potatoes,tomatoes,eggplants,peppers,tobacco,and petunias!The plant is prickly with white flowers(white to violet) and the fruit is a yellow berry.You can find-if you are looking-bull nettle in the southeastern part of our United States and northern Mexico.It reproduces by rhizome and seeds-up 5000!Apple of Sodum can be found in orchards,pastures,basins,croplands where it is hard to control-it can harm tomato and potato crops.If you have cattle on your ranch-beware-it is poisonous to your cows!

pic by td-research from”Weeds of North America”-great book!img_0467

One weed-many names…

This weed comes to me via my sister-MD-who has lived on a farm for 50 years.Sometimes you just can’t see the weeds for the flowers.I should of picked up on this weed in my travels but a lot of things are just relative-it has not been on the radar.This weed is all over and has many names.Let’s start out with goosegrass-Galium  aparine.Ok here we go:catch weed,sticky weed,velcro weed,grip grass,wire grass,common bedstraw,silver crabgrass,and yard grass just to name a few.Hey you may have a different name.In other word it is all over the place.Oh I forgot one-cleavers.It is a summer annual growing horizontally forming a tough rosette.It is found in crop lands,compacted soil,disturbed areas.The seeds are small and brownish and the seed head contains 3-7 at the tip.MD tells me this is what gets you when you per chance walk through them-you clothes are covered with these little seeds.Ready for this-geese like them!

img_0311pic by MD-research:ucdavis.edu .Thanks MD!

Follow up…

This post is a follow up to the 020916 post on Round Up… The World Health Organization has declared the herbicide-glyphosate(Round Up)-a probable carcinogen in humans.The FDA will begin testing corn,soybeans,and other foods for glyphosate.In other words it may cause cancer.Also in short, what percent ends up in our food supply?In tandem with genetically engineered seeds, the herbicide can be sprayed on the plant to kill the weeds. Monsanto claims this is safe.The Center for Biological Diversity is citing that the demise of the monarch butterfly  is due to glyphosate.No shocker here-Monsanto keeps it lawyers busy.It filed a lawsuit to prevent California from adding glyphosate to it’s list of known carcinogens.Stay tuned.

monarch_butterfly_wImage result for pic of roundupgoldmanprize.org

research;huffpost.com 021916

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This just in…

If a robot can sweep your carpet it can pull your weeds.At a conference in Sydney Australia 60 engineers from around the world met at SyndeyU. for the first conference on agricultural robotics.The Australians have developed robots that can de-weed crops.The robots can pull out,laser it,microwave it, or spray weed killers.This can save on labor and yield as the robots eliminate weeds that can also add to harvesting costs, while adding an alternative to more chemicals .We are starting to read that manual elimination of weeds may be needed to lessen our dependence on more chemicals.Hey as a 10 year old who cut “corn out of beans”at my sister’s farm-that sounds like science fiction that will be on the horizon.The horizon is at the end of 2015.Currently estimated at $100,000-AU$ our farmers may want to see some results.Story and pic from:www.ibtimes.co.uk.

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Superweed…definition please.

The basic  definition of a superweed  is one that is tolerant of the chemical  glyphosate and resistant to multiple herbicides modes of action.This also includes 2,4D,dicambia,and others.They currently affect 60-70 million A. and thus promoting more use of herbicides.Another concern has been whether GM crops have lead to the development of superweeds.The conclusion I read is they do not.

Also there are over 30 species of weeds now tolerant of herbicides.The list is as follows:smooth pigweed,palmer amaranth,spinny amaranth,tall waterhemp,common and giant ragweed,hairy begartracks,sweet summer grass,ripgut brome.red brome,tall windmill,windmill grass,hairy flebane,horseweed,summertime fleabane,sourgrass,woody borreria,kochia,topical strangletop,perennial ryegrass,italian ryegrass,rigid ryegrass,buckorn plantain,annual bluegrass,wild radish,annual sowthistle,johnson grass,goosegrass,junglerice,liverseedgrass.This list includes the entire planet to date.

Thanks to weedcontrolfreaks.com and weedscience,org.

As always my mission is “what’s that weed?”

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pics from:gobotany.newenglandwild.org and abc.net.au.

Another winter annual or just a hard working weed?…

Hairy Vetch/fodder vetch-Vicia villosa Roth-is a winter annual reproducing by seed.It is a hairy legume-branching as far as 8′- used as a cover crop-i.e.,fodder- helping to protect the soil.In the cases I saw, it helps with bank stabilization.Vetch is tolerant of acid type soils and hardy to 10F.In addition it adds nitrogen to the soil.Hairy Vetch is has distribution throughout the temperate zones of both hemispheres with 150 species-25 in the US.To most who see this plant it is a weed-a plant out of place.But this is a cultural definition that ignores the reason it is here-helping hold down the planet.

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A very unassuming plant…Burdock-Arctium minus-seems to have a bad image in the weed world with it’s little burs and rank smell.it is a biennal-first year developing a root system while in the second year sending up a tall stalk-1m-2m tall.The leaves are fairly large and heart shaped and develops a purple flower-I have missed this part in my field research.While to some a nuisance , burdock rocks in the herbal world! This plant is packed with carbs,oils,plant sterols,tannins,and healing properties.Just a good ‘ole weed!You can find this plant in the usual weed hang outs:river banks,disturbed habitats-my fav-roadsides,vacant lots, and fields.I am sure if you are in the US this weed is somewhere nearby.

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