Kansas State University Researcher Seeks New Ways to Battle Johnsongrass

Noxious weeds can be an irritable part of daily life for many farmers, but what if that weed is closely related to one of the most important crops grown in the United States? Johnsongrass fits this profile, and it is closely related to the important grain Sorghum. The close relationship between the two plants complicates the eradication of Johnsongrass.

Kansas State University’s Michael Smith, a professor of entomology, is leading a five year research project supported by USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture to find genetic material in Johnsongrass to help fight the noxious weed.

The program is called “Principles underlying the success of the weedy invader Sorghum halepense (‘Johnsongrass’) toward its containment and mitigation.”

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