Reports and Studies
… using WeedGurad Plus
… using WeedGurad Plus
University of Bologna
In 2018 a study about the WGP activity on the field was made in Italy, precisely in Emilia-Romagna region. The study was managed by Prof. Cesare Accinelli, from University of Bologna, and a thesis has been written. The study was conducted in two different farms in Emilia-Romagna.
The first test showed negative results about the weed management, because of the less accuracy in the mechanical application of the paper. The machine hasn’t been calibrated correctly, so the paper was subjected to excessive tension and that caused different lacerations on it.
In the second test, with a more accurate mechanical application and the correct calibration of the machine, there was no lacerations and results about weed management were so satisfactory.
Standard version, Heavy Weight version and Creped version was used for this second test. Smooth version (Standard and Heavy Weight) gave better results than creped. In the first test paper was applicated on melon, in the second the applicated WGP on zucchini.
The conclusion say that WGP is a valid alternative to plastic for weed management in agriculture and that the accuracy of manual or mechanical installation is an important factor; probably the application is the most important phase to obtain the expected results.
Iowa State University
There were no issues with tearing of WeedGuard black creped or WeedGuard paper mulch. In conclusion, paper mulches performed equivalent to the conventional black plastic mulch which i widely used in the industry. A benefit of using paper mulch would be the benefit of not removing it from the field at the end of season, reducing labor, and also creating less plastic waste.
Washington State University
The use of plastic mulch has become a standard practice to control weeds and conserve moisture in vegetable crop production. In this study we evaluated biodegradable paper mulch for in-season deterioration, weed control and broccoli yield. Treatments included three biodegradable paper mulch products and black plastic mulch control.
In conclusion, the WeedGuardPlus® paper mulch did not significantly differ from the standard black plastic mulch in regard to yield and fruit quality. Early yields were slightly lower with the WeedGuardPlus® in comparison to black plastic mulch but total yields were numerically greater. Temperatures under the black plastic mulch were on average 5-10 °F warmer. The warmer temperatures helped promote greater earlier yields but did not help to maintain yields over time. The water wheel transplanter used to punch the holes in both the plastic and paper mulches did not present any difficulty in either situation. Also, there was no tearing of the paper mulch associated with the punching of holes. Weed control was similar among the treatments. Both mulches did a great job preventing weeds within the bed. The only challenge was keeping the weeds down between the row middles but this was true for both the plastic and WeedGuardPlus® mulches. Post-trial the WeedGuardPlus® degraded without difficulty and by October no traces of the WeedGuardPlus® could be found in the field. The WeedGuardPlus® biodegradable mulch offers an effective environmentally sound alternative to conventional black plastic mulch
Colorado State University
Overall, WeedGuardPlus was well suited for the production of both onions and broccoli. The increased transplant survival rate compared to the black plastic was the most interesting finding of the study. The much cooler soil temperatures of the punched WeedGuardPlus compared to the black plastic and somewhat cooler soil temperatures compared to the bare ground is of particular interest. This could be an advantage for producers looking to establish cool season crops such as brasicas in the middle of the summer for a fall harvest. It could also extend the growing region of areas where high summer temperatures prevent effective vegetable production. To further understand the best management practices associated with WeedGuardPlus, further research should be performed on soil water dynamics underneath the mulch. Overall the WeedGuardPlus mulch should increase soil water content compared to bare ground but due to its permeable nature the degree of preservation is currently unclear. Additionally, the cooler soil temperatures under WeedGuardPlus may negatively impact warm season crops such as tomatoes and peppers. This would also be important to explore due to the widespread use of plastic mulches in field tomato production.
Pennsylvania State University
1 – Based on the crop yield of cantaloupe, eggplant and acorn squash, the paper mulch performed as effectively as the nondegradable mulch films in 2008.
2 –When the paper mulch degraded before the vegetable crops growing on the mulch matured, weed competition was not a problem and did not affect either the yield or quality of the harvested crop.
3 – After harvesting the crop growing on the paper mulch, simply incorporating the remaining paper mulch into the soil by rototilling will enhance degradation of the paper mulch