Knowledge of how reduction in the rate of herbicide application or rotation of their mode of action influences weed growth will provide insight into how successful these practices will be in an integrated weed management program. Field experiments were conducted in 1996 and 1997 to quantify velvetleaf growth response to three postemergence herbicides, each with a different mode of action. A monoculture of velvetleaf was treated with halosulfuron, dicamba, and flumiclorac at 0, 0.10, 0.25, 0.50, 0.75, and 1.0 × the labeled rate for weed control in corn. Percent plant mortality increased with rate of application; the greatest mortality occurred in flumiclorac treatments in 1996 and in halosulfuron and flumiclorac treatments in 1997. Growth rate temporarily decreased as application rate increased. Maximum height decreased as rate of application increased, with the dicamba treatment resulting in the greatest (27%) reduction. Early-season leaf area index decreased with increasing rate of application, the greatest reduction occurring with halosulfuron (1997) and flumiclorac (1996 and 1997) treatments. The number of leaves produced per plant was temporarily reduced by all treatments, but treatment with dicamba later resulted in larger numbers of small leaves. The number of velvetleaf seed capsules produced per surviving plant was not reduced by any treatment, but the number of capsules per square meter was reduced by the 0.5 × rate of flumiclorac (1996) and the 0.5- and 1.0 × rates of halosulfuron (1997). Research is needed to evaluate whether the temporary suspension of velvetleaf growth after herbicide treatment is sufficient to prohibit crop yield reduction and velvetleaf capsule production.
Nomenclature: Dicamba; flumiclorac; halosulfuron; velvetleaf, Abutilon theophrasti Medic. ABUTH; corn, Zea mays L.