En EspaŅol
Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Mr. Smarty Plants - Eliminating non-native grasses growiing in non-native alfalfa in Clint, TX

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Saturday - April 16, 2011

From: Clint, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Eliminating non-native grasses growiing in non-native alfalfa in Clint, TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have six acres of alfalfa in Clint, Tx which was planted three years ago. After taking it to Jaime Iglesias PhD, CEA-Agriculture Texas Agrilife Extension El Paso County; he responded: Mr. Zuniga: "I reviewed the Pursuit Label and does not include Bromus genus in the type of grasses to control. Your grasses were identified as Rescue Grass (Bromus catharticus) and Japanese brome (Bromus japonicus)." How can I get rid of these 2 weeds in my field?

ANSWER:

You have already talked to the very authority we would have referred you to, a specialist at your County Extension Office. The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is dedicated to the growth, propagation and protection of plants native not only to North America but to the areas in which those plants are being grown. Bromus catharticus is native to South America and Bromus japonicus to Europe; therefore, both fall out of our area of expertise. These are both members of the Poaceae family, which is a monocot (narrow leaved). Medicago sativo, alfalfa is native to Africa, Asia and Europe. It is a member of the Fabaceae family, and therefore would be a dicot, or broad-leaved plant. Theoretically, you could spray a herbicide for monocots and kill the Bromes, while sparing the dicots, or alfalfa. This is something we absolutely do not recommend. You could do serious damage to your entire ecosystem; you have no way of knowing what other monocots or grasses out there are totally essential to some of the pollinators, birds and herbivores. If you have some reason to feel it absolutely necessary to get rid of the Bromes, mow them before they can seed, pull them out as they come up or learn to live with them. Since everything you have is non-native, we really can make no case either way.

 

More Non-Natives Questions

Identification of tree bought from a magazine ad
August 11, 2013 - I recently submitted the following question to Ask An Expert. They were unable to identify the plant. I hope you will be able to. Can you help me by either identifying this plant or advising me a...
view the full question and answer

Replacing St. Augustine with native grass in Austin
February 24, 2012 - We are renting a house our Sister-in-law owns- the St Augustine is in tough shape, drought and lack of care over the years. Could we plant a native grass or do we have to pull up the remaining St. Aug...
view the full question and answer

Pruning drought-stressed butterfly plants from Kerrville TX
August 22, 2011 - Due to the drought, our butterfly bushes have dead branches. Ordinarily we prune the dormant plants in winter, but can we cut back dead branches now?
view the full question and answer

Cross pollination of orange and crapemyrtle
November 05, 2007 - I have a crapemyrtle tree growing 3 feet from a navel orange tree. This summer a shoot grew from the ground 5 inches from the orange tree. The shoot looks just like the orange tree but the leaves were...
view the full question and answer

Nativity of Myrospermum sousanum
June 13, 2007 - I bought a Myrospermum sousanum (Arroyo Sweetwood) at the Antique Rose Emporium in San Antonio. I see where it is listed as a Texas native on several web sites, but I could not find a reference on the...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center