Solarization for the control of Pueraria montana (kudzu)

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Weed Research


Summary The effects of translucent polyethylene sheeting as a thermal covering to eradicate Pueraria montana (kudzu) were investigated at Clemson, South Carolina on a clay loam. In 2005, the highest reduction of live root crowns was observed where P. montana was covered for the entire growing season (May–October) with a reduction of 42% of live root crowns compared with the control plots. Where P. montana was covered for alternate weeks throughout the growing season live root crowns were reduced by 35%. Covering P. montana for one week and then uncovering for four weeks repeatedly through the season killed 24% of root crowns. In 2006, the second year of treatment to the same plots, the three solarization treatments had similar efficacy of about 97%. The use of polyethylene sheeting appears not to be cost-effective for general control of large P. montana infestations, but may be useful for small patches.

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