Are weed patches stable in location? Application of an explicitly two-dimensional methodology

S. Heijting, W. van der Werf, A. Stein, M.J. Kropff

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30 Citations (Scopus)


Field observations were made in three years continuous maize cultivation in the Netherlands to study the spatial pattern and stability of spatial pattern over time in agricultural weeds. Two-dimensional correlograms were made, using data from single years, to characterise spatial correlation and pattern, while data from two different years were used to calculate correlation over space and time, to characterise the stability of pattern. Weeds that were able to attain high recruitment also exhibited the strongest spatial correlations. These weeds were Echinochloa crus-galli, Chenopodium album, Chenopodium polyspermum and Solanum nigrum. Weeds that were less successful in attaining high densities in the maize rotation, also showed less spatial correlation. Wind dispersing Compositae, e.g. Taraxacum officinale, had spatially uncorrelated patterns. All weeds that showed spatial correlation also showed stability in space, except E. crus-galli. The latter species showed marked population increase and the locations and extent of its patches changed over the years. Statistical interpretation of the data is discussed, as are potential consequences for site-specific management and optimal sampling of weeds.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)381-395
JournalWeed Research
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2007


  • glycine-max fields
  • spatial-distribution
  • seedling populations
  • winter-wheat
  • stability
  • pattern
  • scale
  • distributions
  • parameters
  • dependence


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