Herbicide Residues in Rice–Wheat System under North–Western Mid-Hill Conditions

  • Neelam Sharma
  • S. S. Rana
  • Rajender Kumar
  • Shobha Sondhia
Part of the Environmental Chemistry for a Sustainable World book series (ECSW, volume 12)


Rice-wheat is the predominant cropping system in India, occupying around 10.5 million ha area. Weeds are serious constraint for increasing productivity in this system. Of the total losses caused by pests, weeds have a major share (30%). A long-term experiment was conducted on rice-wheat cropping system during 2000–2014 at Palampur, Himachal Pradesh. Nine treatments, viz. farmers’ practice (T1), continuous use of herbicides (butachlor +2,4-D) with 100% N through inorganic or 25% N substitution through fresh Lantana leaves in rice followed by continuous (isoproturon +2,4-D; T2 and T4) and rotational (clodinafop/isoproturon; T3 and T5) use of herbicides in wheat and rotational use of herbicides [(butachlor/pretilachlor (cyhalofop-butyl) in later years) + 2,4-D)] with 100% N through inorganic or 25% N substitution through fresh Lantana leaves in rice followed by continuous (isoproturon +2,4-D; T6 and T8) and rotational (clodinafop/isoproturon; T7 and T9) use of herbicides in wheat were tested in rice–wheat cropping system from 2000 to 2014–2015. Initial available nutrient status was found to decrease under different treatments with a continuous cropping of wheat-rice for 14 years. Herbicide residue analysis carried out by bioassay and analytical methods revealed that herbicides used did not leave any detectable amount of residues in post-harvest soil, grain or straw samples. A non-significant temporary suppression in the population of beneficial microorganisms occurred after herbicide application, but with the passage of time, the microbial population again built up. No visual phytotoxic effect on the crop was noticed due to applied herbicides. It may be inferred that herbicides are an important tool in tackling the weed menace in wheat-rice cropping system and can be used safely.


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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Neelam Sharma
    • 1
  • S. S. Rana
    • 1
  • Rajender Kumar
    • 1
  • Shobha Sondhia
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Agronomy, Forages and Grassland Management, College of AgricultureCSK Himachal Pradesh Krishi VishvavidyalayaPalampurIndia
  2. 2.ICAR-Directorate of Weed ResearchJabalpurIndia

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