Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

The significance of Cyperaceae as weeds.

Abstract

Weedy Cyperaceae adversely affect natural plant communities and the health of humans and livestock and are major deterrents to agricultural and forest productivity. Most weeds are exogenous and have traits that give them biological and reproductive advantages over other plants. Weeds cost billions of dollars in agriculture, forestry, and urban areas and threaten diversity in natural communities worldwide. Of an estimated 8000 species of weeds worldwide, only about 200 species cause approximately 95% of the problems in production of food, feed, fiber, and livestock. About 25% of the world's weeds are monocots. Of these, sedges are among the most troublesome and difficult to control. The most important cyperaceous weeds in terms of their adverse effect on agriculture include Cyperus rotundus L., C. esculentus L., C. difformis L., C. iria L., and the Fimbristylis miliacea (L.) Vahl/F. dichotoma (L.) Vahl complex, ranking first, 16th, 32nd, 33rd, and 40th among the world's worst weeds, respectively. We provide an overview of cyperaceous weeds, including economic losses, population dynamics, control methods, identification, biology, ecology, dispersal mechanisms, spread, and discussions of major weeds of agriculture, forestry, urban areas, and natural communities.