Related ATTRA Publication:
Sustainable Weed Management for Small and Medium-Scale Farms
Research by scientists from USDA's Agricultural Research Service, published in Weed Science, found that weather conditions can have a significant impact on the competitiveness of organic crops. The team analyzed 18 years of weather data for a Maryland project farm. They found that rainfall during a crop's early reproductive growth or late vegetative cycle can make the crop much more competitive and able to shade out weeds. Cultural management techniques were less effective at boosting crop competitiveness, but still important tools for seasons when precipitation doesn't fall when needed.