AWC - Funded Research

2017 Alberta Weed Survey

AWC funding: $30,000

Summary:

Weed surveys of annual crops have been regularly conducted in the Prairie Provinces since the 1970s. The objectives of this project are to conduct a general and a herbicide-resistant weed survey in Alberta in 2017. The project will document shifts in the abundance, distribution and herbicide resistance of weed populations and assess current weed management strategies.


Objective:

The objectives of this project are to conduct 1) the sixth general weed survey in Alberta since the prairie provincial surveys began in the 1970s, and 2) the third herbicide-resistant weed survey in Alberta since the 1990s. The project will document shifts in the abundance, distribution and herbicide resistance of weed populations across Alberta and assess current weed management strategies.


Benefits to producers:

Weed surveys have been regularly conducted in each of the Prairie Provinces since the 1970s. Seven years will have passed since the last Alberta general weed survey. The survey provides information on the abundance and distribution of weed species in major annual crops including spring wheat, durum, barley, oats, canola, peas and lentils.

The weed survey data can be used to document the changes in weed populations that have occurred since the previous provincial surveys. Weeds identified as increasing in abundance can be targeted for attention by various agencies involved in weed science. The trends identified by the weed surveys are important to the research, industry, and extension communities for developing weed management recommendations for producers that are essential components of sustainable farming systems. Similarly, it has been 10 years since the last herbicide-resistant weed survey in Alberta. Herbicide resistance is arguably the most challenging issue facing producers with respect to weed control. A targeted herbicide-resistant weed survey will help identify the expanding resistant populations and assess current management and best management practices of herbicide-resistant weeds.


Bio:

Julia Leeson completed both her BSc and MSc at the University of Saskatchewan through the Department of Biology.  Since that time she has been working as a Weed Monitoring Biologist with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada in Saskatoon.  She has led the provincial weed survey program since 2009.  Her areas of research include provincial weed surveys, farm management surveys and monitoring changes in weed populations in long-term cropping systems studies.