Yellow nutsedge has a very high potential for multiplying and spreading via tubers. This invasive species easily becomes established in all crops. Its rhizomes can damage tuber crops. Yield losses of up to 40% (potatoes) and 60% (sugar beet) have been observed, as well as qualitative losses.
Once established, yellow nutsedge is very difficult to control for several reasons:
- The tubers are ‘invisible’ to the farmer, as they are hidden in the soil.
- The tubers cannot be destroyed by mechanical means.
- To date, there is no known herbicide that translocates to the tubers.
Consequently, neither classic graminicides nor most other selective herbicides are effective against yellow nutsedge. Pulling it does not guarantee complete eradication either. Hence, only a combination of methods for tackling this weed enable its control in the long term.