Hydrilla is one of the most serious aquatic weed problems in the United States, and fluridone is the only U.S. Environment Protection Agency (USEPA)–approved herbicide that provides relatively long-term systemic control. Recently, hydrilla biotypes with varying levels of fluridone resistance have been documented in Florida. Several biotypes of hydrilla varying in resistance levels were maintained in 950-L tanks under ambient sunlight and day-length conditions from September 2004 to September 2005 in absence of fluridone. Phenotypic measurements were performed during this 1-yr period to monitor differences in growth and reproductive physiology. All fluridone-resistant biotypes (except R3) were growing at the same rate or greater than the susceptible hydrilla. These data suggested that there are no deleterious effects on growth and reproductive physiology because of development of fluridone resistance. Aggressive spread of fluridone-resistant dioecious hydrilla in aquatic ecosystems can severely affect hydrilla management and, consequently, cause substantial and long-lasting ecological and economic problems throughout the southern United States.
Nomenclature: Fluridone; hydrilla; Hydrilla verticillata (L.f.) Royle HYLLI