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Free program predicts when weeds will emerge and how fast they will grow.

WeedCast is a Windows-based software application that forecasts emergence and growth of 17 weeds (list below). Developed by USDA-ARS researchers Cheryl Reese and Frank Forcella, the program's concept is fairly simple: You enter daily max-min temperatures and rainfall into a preformatted spreadsheet and select environmental data such as soil type, water capacity, and previous crop and tillage. WeedCast then generates tables and graphs forecasting emergence potential, emergence timing and weed-seedling height. (Not all are available for each weed species in the currently available Alpha version.)

Predictions should be treated as guides -- estimates based upon current understandings of the biology of the various weed species, caution the application's authors. Regular updates will improve predictions and add new weed species. Requires IBM-compatible with a 80386 processor or higher (Pentium processors highly recommended), hard drive with at least 8 megs available, 4 megs RAM, Windows 3.1 or Windows 95 and mouse.

Sample emergence graph generated by
WeedCast. [Full-screen 4KB]
WeedCast forecasts emergence and growth of:

Green foxtail
Giant foxtail
Yellow foxtail
Redroot pigweed
Common lambsquarters
Wild buckwheat
Pennsylvania smartweed
Proso millet
Common sunflower
Black nightshade
Common cocklebur
Common ragweed
Giant ragweed
Wild mustard

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