Competitive Effects of Barnyardgrass (Echinochloa Crusgalli (L.) Beauv) and Early Watergrass (Echinochloa Oryzoides (Ard) Fisher) on Yield, Yield Components and Growth Indices of Rice (Oryza sativa L.)



Barnyardgrass has always been considered as the most important weed of rice all over the world. Meanwhile, establishment of new species of this genus which is more adaptable to paddy ecosystem will increase the importance of this genus as a new threat to rice. In order to evaluate the competition of two species of barnyardgrass with rice, an experiment was conducted at Rice Research Institute of Iran (Rasht) in 2007. The experimental design was a randomized complete block with three replications arranged in a partial additive series. The treatments included two barnyardgrass species (E. crus-galli and E. oryzoides), and species density at four levels (0, 10, 20 and 40 plant.m-2), transplanted with Hashemi land races cultivar rice in local normal density (20 bunches.m-2) and each bunch included three seedlings. Destructive samples were taken two weeks after transplanting up to harvesting, that is, 5 times by 10 days interval in 0.25 m-2. Rice total dry matter accumulation (TDM), Leaf area index (LAI), crop growth rate (CGR), relative growth rate (RGR), yield and yield components were measured. Results showed that yield, yield components and growth indices were affected by both weed species significantly and no interaction between species occurred. Fitting the hyperbolic yield loss model to rice grain yield in barnyardgrass density showed that two weed species were not significantly different. Morphological similarity and ecological adaptability of new barnyardgrass species including resistance to flooding and also high similarity to crop plant that makes its hand weeding less efficient, implies E. oryzoides as a new threat for rice cultivation in northern paddy field of Iran. More investigation on biology of this species is suggested in order to present an applied integrated method for E. oryzoides management.