Spermacoce latifolia - a predominant alien invasive plant in root crops and its management in Lomaivuna ,Viti Levu, Fiji
A weed survey and a soil seed bank study to identify the weed species in taro (Colocasia esculenta (L.) Schott) and cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz) farms were completed. For the weed survey, ten farms were randomly selected and in each farm ten quadrats were sampled using a zigzag method of sampling. Five farms were randomly selected from the ten farms surveyed, and in each of these five farms four quadrats were sampled for a soil seed bank study. An average of 12 weed species were found in the above-ground weed community in taro and cassava farms. The most predominant weed was an introduced species, Spermacoce latifolia Blume which had a density of 42%, frequency of 98% and has the largest germinable soil seed bank. Farmers should aim to reduce the size of the soil seed bank of S. latifolia to ensure its impact on crop yields and potential spread is minimised. This could be achieved by eliminating S. latifolia plants on the farm before they reach flowering stage.
Macanawai, A.R. (2016). Spermacoce latifolia - a predominant alien invasive plant in root crops and its management in Lomaivuna ,Viti Levu, Fiji. Acta Hortic. 1123, 215-220
Spermacoce latifolia, taro, cassava, weed survey, seed bank