There is little information published on patch expansion of perennial weeds and none for Apocynum cannabinum. Studies were conducted to measure the between-season and in-season expansion patterns of natural A. cannabinum patches over three growing seasons. Regression analysis indicated strong relations between patch area in consecutive years 1996 to 1997 (r2 = 0.81) and 1997 to 1998 (r2 = 0.76). Patches less than 20 m2 in 1996 increased in area by more than 100% in 1997 during a fallow season. However, patches decreased in size 6 to 51% between 1997 and 1998 when Glycine max was grown. Evidence suggested that a late-season mowing of the A. cannabinum patches in 1997 contributed more to the decline in patch area than competition from G. max during the 1998 season. The relations between patch area and growing degree units (r2 = 0.97) indicated that greater than 89% of the terminal patch expansion occurred prior to the accumulation of 435 growing degree units (GDU) (June 19, 1997; May 31, 1998; June 9, 30-yr average), with minimal patch expansion between 435 and 1,000 GDU. Patches were at 50% of their final area on May 27, 1997, and May 14, 1998, a time when only 22% of the A. cannabinum population had emerged (r2 = 0.99). Knowledge of patch size and expansion could help growers time weed scouting, to account for the later emergence patterns of this species, as well as assist in timing appropriate weed management efforts. This information could also be used in conjunction with aerial photographs to project potential patch size for site-specific management of this weed.
Nomenclature: Apocynum cannabinum L. APCCA, hemp dogbane; Glycine max (L.) Merr., soybean.