The effects of Pennsylvania smartweed (Polygonum pensylvanicum L.) interference in soybeans [Glycine max (L.) Merr. ‘Pickett 71’] were studied in the field under a naturally occurring weed population. Soybean seed yield was reduced an average of 13% by a density of eight Pennsylvania smartweed plants per 10 m of row. Greater yield reductions of 21, 37, and 62% resulted from full-season interference by densities of 16, 32, and 240 weeds per 10 m of row, respectively. Fewer than five weeds per 10 m of row did not significantly reduce crop yield. A natural population of 240 weeds per 10 m of row did not reduce soybean yield if the period of interference was limited to 6 weeks or less after crop emergence. However, more than 6 weeks of weed interference resulted in significant yield reduction. Conversely, if the crop was kept weed-free for a period of 4 weeks or more after emergence, seed yield was not reduced. No allelopathic interaction between the two species was observed in greenhouse studies using a recirculating nutrient solution and alternate pots of soybeans and Pennsylvania smartweed.
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