Invasions by exotic annual grasses, most notably cheatgrass and medusahead, are unambiguous threats to rangelands in the western United States, diminishing livestock productivity and increasing wildfire activity.
In a new study, researchers will test a novel weed-suppressive bacteria (WSB) combined with the herbicide imazapic on target weeds and non-target native plants on over 1000 acres in the Boise River Wildlife Management Area. Researchers will compare burned areas treated with WSB, or imazapic, or WSB+imazapic to untreated, control areas. The objective is to determine if, when, and where spraying is effective for controlling exotic annual grasses. They will also model how landscape factors influence treatment effectiveness. This study is requested and funded by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture.