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Title:Beauty in the Beast
Author(s):Chatham, Laura
Subject(s):Crop Sciences
Abstract:Cutleaf teasel, a plant endemic to Europe, was introduced in the 1700s for the use of its seed heads in teasing wool for the textile industry. Today, teasel is a noxious weed in several states and is often found growing in dense patches along Midwest highways, overtaking native vegetation. Management options are limited, but control can be achieved with the use of herbicides. In both urban and agronomic settings, herbicides often are the most efficientand sometimes the onlymethod of weed control. Weeds can dramatically reduce yields, leading farmers to spend more on herbicides than on any other pesticide. However, much like antibiotic resistance threatens human health, the evolution of herbicide resistance threatens weed management. My research focuses on the biological mechanisms conferring herbicide resistance in weeds and their evolution, an area that informs management decisions that preserve and protect the use of herbicides. As our population size grows, demanding the production of more food and feed, the obstacle of herbicide resistance must not be overlooked any more than the teasel along our highways. This aggressive weed is one that often goes unnoticed, but is brought to light in this photograph.
Issue Date:2015-04
Rights Information:Copyright 2015 Laura Chatham
Date Available in IDEALS:2015-04-16

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