Main content area

Biological control of weeds: research by the United States Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service: selected case studies

Quimby, P.C. Jr., DeLoach, C.J., Wineriter, S.A., Goolsby, J.A., Sobhian, R., Boyette, C.D., Abbas, H.K.
Pest management science 2003 v.59 no.6/7 pp. 671
weeds, Tamarix, Melaleuca quinquenervia, Galium spurium, Galium aparine, Pueraria montana var. lobata, weed control, biological control, biological control agents, Chrysomelidae, Psyllidae, Diptera, plant pathogenic fungi, Myrothecium verrucaria, host range, case studies, agricultural research, USDA
Research by the USDA-Agricultural Research Service (ARS) on biological control of weeds has been practiced for many years because of its inherent ecological and economic advantages. Today, it is further driven by ARS adherence to Presidential Executive Order 13112 (3 February 1999) on invasive species and to USDA-ARS policy toward developing technology in support of sustainable agriculture with reduced dependence on non-renewable petrochemical resources. This paper reports examples or case studies selected to demonstrate the traditional or classical approach for biological control programs using Old World arthropods against Tamarix spp, Melaleuca quinquenervia (Cav) ST Blake and Galium spurium L/G aparine L, and the augmentative approach with a native plant pathogen against Pueraria lobata Ohwi = P montana. The examples illustrated various conflicts of interest with endangered species and ecological complexities of arthropods with associated microbes such as nematodes.