Palmer amaranth, Amaranthus palmeri, is a new invasive weed in the pigweed family that has become a major challenge for farmers across the U.S. for much of the last decade. Native to the Sonora Desert of Arizona and Northern Mexico, Palmer amaranth is well adapted to the hot Maryland summers. It was first discovered in Maryland during the mid-twentieth century, but the presence of herbicide resistant Palmer amaranth was not confirmed until 2014. Since then it has spread to most regions of the state including Eastern, Southern, and Western Maryland. The spread of Palmer amaranth has been hastened by the movement of contaminated equipment, feed, and seed from infested areas.
Common Ragweed (Ambrosia artemisiifolia) is a native summer annual weed of many cropping systems in the mid-Atlantic. It is often encountered as weed in agronomic crops as well as vegetable, orchards, roadsides, and abandoned fields. Common ragweed can thrive in lower fertility soils and is often more severe in reduced or no-tillage situations. In Maryland, populations of glyphosate resistant common ragweed were first confirmed in 2014. Resistance to ALS herbicides was also confirmed the same year. In most areas of Maryland, common ragweed has two-way resistance to both glyphosate and ALS chemistry. In 2017, pockets of three way resistant common ragweed plants were confirmed in parts of Delaware and the Eastern Shore of Maryland to PPO, ALS and glyphosate. Herbicide resistant common ragweed can be very difficult to control in agronomic crops, particularly soybeans.