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The Center for Native Grasslands Management

Title: Use of carbon banding to maximize field establishment of switchgrass
Year: 2002
Author(s): Crowley, S., Meints, P.
Source Title: Proceedings of the Third Eastern Native Grass Symposium
Source Type: Proceedings
pages: 293
Original Publication:  
Abstract: Switchgrass is typically a poor competitor under open field establishment. This study was conducted to determine if the carbon banding establishment system will reduce weed competition during early stand establishment in switchgrass. Pre-chill, ethylene pre-chill, and moisturizing seed treatments were applied pre-plant. The experiment was established as a RCB design blocking on field establishment treatments of killed sod, tilled field, tilled field with oat cover crop, and carbon banding followed by diuron application. Statistical analysis showed differences in emergence impacted by field establishment practice. The carbon banding technique eliminated weed competition during the first two months of establishment. However, diuron injury occurred on switchgrass plants due to heavy rain diluting the carbon bands immediately following planting. Therefore, plots utilizing oat as a cover crop average 90% higher switchgrass emergence and establishment than the carbon banding/diuron plots and were 46% higher than the tilled field establishment. Within pre-plant seed treatment, moisturizing resulted in 52%, 38%, and 34% increased emergence and establishment over prechill, untreated control, and ethylene pre-chill, respectively. The carbon banding establishment system reduced early weed competition. However, safer methods must be developed to avoid herbicide damage to switchgrass seedlings.
Publisher: The North Carolina Botanical Garden, Chapel Hill, NC, October 1-3, 2002. Omnipress, Madison, WI
Editor(s): J. Randall