Weed control represents a major issue not only in agriculture but also in nursery production of ornamental species. This is also a key problem in nursery container production, where weeds can relevantly affect the aesthetical and commercial value of the plants. Usually this problem is overcome using liquid or granular herbicides or special disks (i.e. co- co-fibre disks) which suppress/avoid weed emergence. However, the use of herbicides is often associated with possible environmental drawbacks while the disks may represent a relevant cost for the farmers. Moreover no natural substances with herbicide action are la- belled in Italy for nursery production at the moment. In this respect, a specific trial has been carried out at the University of Pisa since 2012 in order to test different physical weed control methods, which may be a possible alternative to herbicide application and disk use in nursery container production. The treatment where made in Photinia × fraseri, growth in common commercial pots filled by peat-based potting soil artificially infested by Oxalis corniculata L. Two different physical treatments were compared: - flaming performed with a trolley machine connected to a manual lance equipped with a 10 cm wide open flame rod burner; - steaming performed with a professional steam generator (power 2.4 kW and steam outflow 3.12 kg h-1) equipped with a manual lance and an on purpose designed and realized dis- penser. Two different frequencies were tested for both the thermal applications. This trial is still on-going but the preliminary results showed that steaming could represent a real effective and economically sound system of weed control in nursery container produc- tion. However, further studies to closely evaluate steaming performance and long-period ef- fectiveness as well as generator efficiency are needed in order to optimize this technique.
|Titolo:||Experiences on physical weed control in nursery container production|
|Anno del prodotto:||2014|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||4.1 Contributo in Atti di convegno|