Overreliance on herbicides for weed control is conducive to the evolution of herbicide resistance.
Lolium rigidum (annual ryegrass) is a species that is prone to evolve resistance to a wide range of herbicide modes of action. Rapid detection of herbicide-resistant weed populations in the field can aid farmers to optimize the use of effective herbicides for their control.
The feasibility and utility of a rapid 7-d agar-based assay to reliably detect L. rigidum resistant to key pre- and post-emergence herbicides including clethodim, glyphosate, pyroxasulfone and trifluralin were investigated in three phases: correlation with traditional pot-based dose-response assays, effect of seed dormancy, and stability of herbicides in agar. Easy-to-interpret results were obtained using non-dormant seeds from susceptible and resistant populations, and resistance was detected similarly as pot-based assays. However, the test is not suitable for trifluralin because of instability in agar as measured over a 10-d period, as well as freshly-harvested seeds due to primary dormancy.
This study demonstrates the utility of a portable and rapid assay that allows for on-farm testing of clethodim, glyphosate, and pyroxasulfone resistance in L. rigidum, thereby aiding the identification and implementation of effective herbicide control options.