Invasive weed found in Haryana wheat crop

  1. Scientist have found an invasive weed called Emex australis Steinh in wheat fields at villages of Faridabad and adjoining districts in Haryana. The weed is commonly known as ‘doublegee’, ‘three corner jack’ or ‘spiny emex’.
  2. The invasive weed belongs to the family Polygonaceae.  It is native to Australia and South Africa.
  3. The weed prospers in in conditions such as drought and unseasonal rain and climate change help increase its numbers. The weed has the potential to damage wheat crops and reduce its productivity in India.
  4. The weed was first reported in India in Santhal Pargana division of erstwhile united Bihar in 1984 and in Jammu & Kashmir in 1987. In 2016, it was reported from upper Gangetic plains in Uttar Pradesh.
  5. Recently, an invasive weed called ‘Onion Weed’ or Asphodelus Fistulosus invaded onion farms in Ahmadnagar and Aurangabad districts in Maharashtra.
  6. The weed is a native of North Africa, Southern Europe and West Asia. It looks like an onion plant.

The weed can potentially damage India’s self-sufficiency in onion production. It could also make land infertile if it is not controlled in a timely manner