Balance between efficacy and sustainability of weed management in rain fed production systems of Catalonia

Research group


84,700 Euros

Funding body

National Plan (MINECO, Spain)

Type of action

Project reference


The current project proposes an integrated Weed Management (IWM) analysis in two distinct scenarios, the rain fed cereal systems and the vineyard systems, both in West Catalonia. In winter cereals, different IWM programmes are set up for B. diandrus and P. rhoeas providing information about the temporal and spatial dynamics of the infestations –including the evolution of P. rhoeas herbicide resistance- and evaluating with agronomic, economic and environmental criteria, the sustainability of the IWM programmes. The experiments for cereals are conducted in two direct drilling commercial fields (in Agramunt for B. diandrus and Foradada for P. rhoeas), where four IWM levels are implemented during three years following a gradient from more (great dependence of external inputs) to less management intensity (without herbicide use). Alongside, studies for both species are carried out with the aim to characterize the spatial distribution and dynamics depending on the management strategies. In the vineyards of Raimat (Lleida) different management strategies of cover crops are established as tactics to suppress Cynodon dactylon and others weeds, that differ in the type of cover crop used (natural or directed), its management (subsoiler, herbicides, mulching) and frequency of operations and in the placement of the pipe line (below grapevines or in the street). Each management provide information of the weed spatial dynamics and the sustainability of the production is evaluated from the same triple criteria than in winter cereals: from an agronomic, economic and environmental point of view. For the analysis of sustainability, for each crop, detailed information of economic and energetic costs, and the carbon and water footprints available for all variables that integrate their production systems are included. The current project provide outstanding innovations with an integrative approach of IWM using different methodologies and tools that allow a dynamic perspective of the production systems and, at the same time, a tangible evaluation of the criteria that define their sustainability.