Ecology, physiology, and management of cogongrass (Imperata cylindrica): final report: prepared for Florida Institute of Phosphate Research
Document Type: Book
Author(s): D. G. Shilling; T. A. Bewick; J. F. Gaffney; S. K. McDonald; C. A. Chase; E. R.R.L. Johnson
Publication Year: 1997

Cataloging Information

  • agriculture
  • artificial regeneration
  • biomass
  • distribution
  • disturbance
  • Florida
  • flowering
  • genetics
  • germination
  • herbicides
  • Imperata
  • Imperata cylindrica
  • invasive species
  • microclimate
  • mowing
  • old fields
  • phosphate
  • physiology
  • plant growth
  • pollination
  • population ecology
  • reproduction
  • seasonal activities
  • seed dispersal
  • seed production
  • seedlings
  • site treatments
  • suppression
  • tillage
  • wind
Record Maintained By:
Record Last Modified: June 1, 2018
FRAMES Record Number: 40633
Tall Timbers Record Number: 15419
TTRS Location Status: In-file
TTRS Abstract Status: Okay, Fair use, Reproduced by permission

This bibliographic record was either created or modified by the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy and is provided without charge to promote research and education in Fire Ecology. The E.V. Komarek Fire Ecology Database is the intellectual property of the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy.


From the Conclusions and Recommendations...'Discing stands of cogongrass was not effective for cogongrass control. Shallow tillage only fragmented rhizomes, causing only short-term growth reduction and subsequent strong shoot growth. A combination of discing and imazapyr treatments provided greater that 90% control. Removing old growth through burning and applying herbicide to new tissue may also be important. Herbicide interception by living plant tissue is maximized resulting in greater efficacy. Imazapyr applied to regrowth after burning was as effective as imazapyr combined with discing.... An integrated management strategy utilizing all available methods of control is needed to effectively manage cogongrass. If the ecological niche is not filled with another plant species after control methods have been implemented, cogongrass will re-invade. Reliance on a single means of control will generally result in failure to effectively manage cogongrass. Integrated management, including burning, tillage, mowing, chemical, and cultural control will increase the likelihood of cogongrass suppression. Burning removes old growth and dead biomass having two benefits. One, the rhizomes are forced to re-allocate starch storage reserves to produce new shoot growth, thereby weakening the rhizomes. Secondly, removal of the substantial biomass improves other management practices -- tillage operations are more effective and, once regrowth occurs, greater herbicide coverage of actively growing tissue is achieved. Allowing regrowth after burning and tillage followed by a proven herbicide is the most effective management program. Above ground tissue is young and actively growing, the rhizomes have been weakened, and if timed correctly (October/November), the rhizomes may be strong photosynthetic sinks. After suppression of cogongrass, the establishment of desirable plant species is essential for long-term control of cogongrass. The strategy is to replace cogongrass, not just kill it. If a replacement plant species does not fill the niche occupied by cogongrass after suppression then cogongrass will simply refill the niche. In these studies, common hulled bermudagrass and hairy indigo in combination with glyphosate or imazapyr, respectively, grew vigorously and remained free of cogongrass for up to 2 years after seeding. Auccess of species establishment depended on tolerance to the herbicide and soil type. Future research which would improve management of cogongrass-infested lands includes evaluation and improvement of species for revegetation purposes. Desirable characheristics of revegetation species will include strong germination and emergence followed by quick canopy formation, a perennial habit or the ability to re-establish from seed each season, tolerance to the commonly-used herbicides for cogongrass control, and strong growth in a limited-input system. '

Online Link(s):
Shilling, D. G., T. A. Bewick, J. F. Gaffney, S. K. McDonald, C. A. Chase, and E. R. R. L. Johnson. 1997. Ecology, physiology, and management of cogongrass (Imperata cylindrica): final report: prepared for Florida Institute of Phosphate Research. FIPR Publication 03-107-140. Bartow, FL, Florida Institute of Phosphate Research.