SA04NQ-04: Pest management - Aussie Pineapples

SA04NQ-04: Pest management


Research Site / Demonstration Number: SA04NQ-04
Grower Collaborator: Accorsini Pines
Location 4: Bruce Highway, Mutanee
Initiation Date: April 2019


To evaluate two new experimental herbicides as potential industry replacements, with a particular focus on Diuron.


  1. To evaluate potential replacement products for current herbicides used for the management of weeds.
  2. To evaluate any phytotoxic effects of replacement products on crop health.
  3.  To evaluate the best application rates, volumes and timing for replacement products.
  4. To undertake a cost analysis of different pest management programs against standard practices.


The following treatments were applied as a pre-plant incorporation prior to bed forming.  


  • Crop health observations: Monthly 0 – 12 months
  • Weed efficacy assessments: Monthly 0 – 24 months
  • Fruit yield and size assessments: 24 months
  • Cost Analysis: 24 months



April 2019
Treatments planned
Site has been selected

June 2019
Site – land prepared
Pre-plant treatments have been applied and incorporated into the soil
Bed formed and planted

August 2019
Monitoring – weed counts
Crop health assessments

September 2019
Post plant foliar applications


Continual rainfall held up establishment of the site and ability of the grower to begin land prep.


Research is being undertaken in collaboration with Nufarm Townsville.


Three months after planting weed count assessments were undertaken.  For each replicate weeds were counted manually and classified as broadleaf or grass.  The counts are as follows:

The weed counts were averaged over the replicates and each product ranked in order of weed efficacy.

Efficacy Rankings – in order of weed suppression

The weed species identified in the trial areas were primarily blackberry, nightshade and paspalum. 

Initial results have indicated treatment SCAL5045 at an application rate of 1.4kg/ha has provided a similar level of weed control for both broadleaf and grass species when compared with the standard practice of 2.2. kg/ha Hyvar (Bromacil).  These results reflect a comparison of products and rates as a pre-plant incorporation in the soil prior to bed forming ONLY.  

SCAL5045 applied at lower rates provide some suppression of weeds but there is a noticeable difference at these rates.  NU3398 across all rates provided good results in suppression of grass species, but poor control of broadleaf weed species.

Crop health observations across all treatments indicated none of the new chemistries had a negative effects on root or plant health.  

Post plant efficacy

In September after observations of pre-plant treatments were undertaken, the remainder of the trial was sprayed with traditional herbicide and SCAL5045 at an application rate of 1.4kg/ha in 5,000L/ha water.  The herbicides were applied as a foliar application via the boom sprayer. 

SCAL5045 at an application rate of 1.4kg/ha in 5,000L/ha water had phytotoxic effects on the pineapple plants as a foliar application.  Weed species (both grass and broadleaf) were not affected by the foliar spray.  

Therefore, SCAL5045 at an application rate of 1.4kg/ha can NOT be applied as a post plant foliar application due to phytotoxic effects on the pineapple plants and its inability to act as a ‘knock down’ on both grass and broadleaf weed species. However, as a pre-plant incorporation into the soil prior to bed forming, SCAL5045 at an application rate of 1.4kg/ha provides good suppression of both grass and broadleaf weed species equivalent to industry standards.  Initial results for SCAL5045 at an application rate of 1.4kg/ha is indicating strong evidence for further research as a replacement for Hyvar (Bromacil) in the future. 

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