Follow the ongoing effort to protect South Carolina agriculture from Benghal dayflower, Commelina benghalensis.
New detections in Dorchester County
DORCHESTER — Benghal dayflower (tropical spiderwort, Commelina benghalensis) was recently detected in Dorchester County, SC by County Extension Agent Jonathan Croft, and confirmed by Dixie Damrel on September 25, 2015. This is a first detection of Benghal dayflower (BDF) in Dorchester County and also a first detection in South Carolina in commercial agricultural fields. Several small infestations of BDF were detected in residential areas in Beaufort and Orangeburg Counties in September 2013 and the Clemson University Department of Plant Industry (DPI) has been monitoring and assisting the homeowners with containment and eradication.
Benghal dayflower is designated as both a state and federal noxious weed. BDF is a significant problem in Round-up Ready crops, because it is tolerant to many herbicides, including glyphosate. The recent detections were made in both peanut and soybean fields with at least 500 acres confirmed to be infested. DPI is currently planning a delimiting survey of the surrounding area to determine the extent of the infestation.
For more information on the identification and biology of Benghal dayflower, see our pest alert and brochures.
If you suspect that you have found Benghal dayflower, please contact Sherry Aultman, Interim State Plant Regulatory Official at 864-646-2128
DPI suspends survey until spring
CLEMSON — Due to the approaching winter weather, officials have suspended Benghal dayflower survey efforts until Spring 2014. The noxious weed has become much more difficult to identify with recent cold snaps. If you suspect you have found Benghal dayflower, please contact Clemson-DPI at email@example.com or 864.646.2140. Send images via email, if possible. In the meantime, monitor the infestation and avoid entering or disturbing the area as much as possible. Officials will keep a directory of contacts throughout the state and follow up in the spring once new growth begins to emerge.
Family finds noxious weed in backyard
BEAUFORT — Prior to surveying a Beaufort neighborhood, Clemson-DPI sent letters and flyers to homeowners alerting them of the potential threat Benghal dayflower presents and the upcoming survey. One of these homeowners sent two of her children out into the backyard to look for the invasive weed. To her surprise, they found it! Clemson officials were alerted and quickly confirmed the children's suspicions, marking the yard as the second find of Commelina benghalensis in Beaufort County.
Plant inspectors to go door-to-door in Beaufort
CLEMSON — Clemson University plant industry officials on October 28 will begin conducting a house-to-house survey for a harmful weed in Beaufort. Searchers will be looking for Commelina benghalensis, or Benghal dayflower, a state- and federally-designated noxious weed that was recently detected for the first time in South Carolina.
Clemson University Department of Plant Industry (DPI) personnel will conduct the Benghal dayflower survey from October 28 to November 1, 2013. They will concentrate their search in the vicinity of Bay Street and Ribaut Road in Beaufort. Personnel will be going door to door because the first detection of this weed was found in the yard of a Beaufort residence. Letters explaining the survey and describing the target weed have been sent to homeowners in the survey area. Surveyors will carry photo identification and credentials from the Clemson University Department of Plant Industry.
The purpose of the survey is to determine the extent that Benghal dayflower exists in the Beaufort area. The weed poses a serious threat to crops such as corn, soybeans, and cotton. The weed grows a dense stand that can smother other plants. In addition, Benghal dayflower is a significant problem in Round-up Ready crops, because it is tolerant to many herbicides, including glyphosate.
Officials ask the public’s help in locating Benghal dayflower plants. Please be aware that it is not always easy to identify Benghal dayflower because there are native dayflower species that look similar. See our brochure for more information.