The first principle of weed management is: The Weeds Always Win
~After many thousands of years of tillage and hand-weeding we still have weeds.
~After 50 years of herbicides we still have weeds in the same fields.
~In every field, in every year, we always miss some weeds.
~In some years we miss many weeds in a field.
~Very infrequently we miss all the weeds in a field.
~New weed species appear frequently, spreading across the country.
~No weed species have disappeared from production fields.
~Humans have recently created an entirely new category of very nasty weeds: herbicide resistant weeds.
The harder we try, the better they get.
The winner, and still champion........
Why do the weeds always win? The bottom line is:
Because they adapt and change and get better. No sitting around and whining about
how unfair life is. Over evolutionary time they have encountered everything nature (and
humans) has to offer. They have died in untold zillions. The survivors are the winners.
Weed biology and ecology is the story of their success. In this section we will learn about the processes and outcomes of this ruthless adaptation to adversity.
Weed Biology & Ecology Glossary of Terminology
Traits that Make Weeds Successful: Student Discussion List (Feb. 2001)