Weed management improves yield and quality of direct seeded rice

Severe water shortage in Pakistan has led the researchers to develop different sowing methods of rice such as direct drilling of seed in the soil as an alternative or substitute to the flooded transplanted rice. But direct drilling of rice severs the weed proliferation which reduces crop yields. Weed control methods including hand hoeing, mechanical and chemical control were tested for weed management in direct seeded rice. All the weed control methods were effective in decreasing the total weed density and dry weight over control and improving the rice yield and quality. Higher weed suppression and increase in rice yield was resulted by hand pulling than by the mechanical hoeing. Both hand pulling and mechanical hoeing were better than herbicides in suppression of weed and increasing yield. All the herbicides resulted in more than 80 % reduction in weed density and 74-87 % decrease in weed dry weight. Maximum increase of 30 % in grain yield over control was observed in hand pulling and that of 25 % in mechanical hoeing. Both methods also resulted in improved quality and gave maximum percentage of normal kernels that is 60.47 in mechanical hoeing and 60.03 hand pulling. Increase in rice yield due to application of herbicides was 7-19 %. The order of herbicides in suppressing the weeds as well as increasing rice yield was pretilachlor>butachlor>pendimethalin. Keywords: Direct seeding, quality, rice, weed control, yield.

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