Fight the weed war with harvest sampling

Author: Sarah Jeffrey | Date: 15 Oct 2015

Image of Grain Orana Alliance (GOA) chief executive officer Maurie Street

The Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) is calling on New South Wales grain growers to step up their fight against herbicide resistance this harvest by submitting weed seeds samples for testing.

The collection and testing of survivor weed samples will help growers map the resistance status of individual farms and paddocks and develop an effective long-term strategy for the management of hard-to-kill weeds.

Chief executive officer of the GRDC-funded grower solution group Grain Orana Alliance (GOA) Maurie Street, told growers attending a recent GRDC Grains Research Update at Coonamble that herbicide resistance was commonplace across the central western NSW cropping belt and that multiple resistances were recorded in the vast majority of samples.

This follows extensive surveys coordinated by GOA to quantify the extent and types of resistance in problem weeds such as annual ryegrass and wild or black oats present during the 2013 and 2014 harvest.

“These surveys identified many populations in the central west of NSW that rival and possibly surpass the severity of Western Australian herbicide resistance,” Mr Street said.

“It was invaluable for identifying which herbicide groups are the most challenged in terms of effectiveness and it served as a warning to growers about herbicides that many have long considered `safe and effective’ options such as Select®, Atrazine, Trifluralin and glyphosate which have clear signs of resistance developing.

“Growers need to know their enemy. Taking seed samples from survivor weeds at harvest and sending them off for testing will allow growers to assess their control options for next year.

“Unless growers understand the resistance status of the weeds on their farm, they can’t have full confidence that their normal control measures will continue to work in the future.”

For more information on the survey visit the GRDC website

Or for the latest report on the 2014 weed samples download the Report from the GOA website.

The two weed seed testing services available in Australia are provided by Peter Boutsalis’ Plant Science Consulting (PSC), in South Australia, and John Broster at Charles Sturt University (CSU), in NSW. More information about these services is available here or here.

General information on herbicide resistance and weed seed testing is available via the IWM Hub in the resources section of the GRDC website

Contact Details

For Interviews

Maurie Street, Chief Executive Officer, Grain Orana Alliance
0400 066 201


Sarah Jeffrey, Senior Consultant Cox Inall Communications
0418 152859

GRDC Project Code GOA00001

Region North