Final Report for FNE06-590
This project compares the effect of several established weed control strategies on field bindweed while maintaining cropping on the land. A number of methods were trialed on bindweed infested ground: a control strategy of 2-3 week weeding intervals; intensive weeding at 5-7 day intervals; mulching with hay, black plastic, and poly landscape fabric; sheet mulching; maintaining an open fallow; and rotating pastured pigs through the areas. Measured parameters included crop yield, plant health, time and labor, and the amount of weed pressure experienced over the season.
Sheet mulching, open fallow, and bi-monthly weeding had poor results. Techniques showing the best results were the plastic and poly mulches (especially for warmth loving crops), hay mulches (best on cool weather crops), and intensified weeding cycles. Our final assessment is that bindweed can be controlled while under intensive vegetable production, but it requires some inputs in terms of mulches and cultivation timing.