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Drew Lyon

Drew Lyon
Endowed Chair Small Grains Extension and Research, Weed Science

169 Johnson Hall
PO Box 646420
Pullman, WA 99164-6420 USA
Phone 509-335-2961

Curriculum vitae (pdf)


Ph.D.,  Agronomy/Weed Science, University of Nebraska-Lincoln. August 1988
Dissertation: A search for metribuzin tolerance in fieldbeans (Phaseolus vulgaris).

M.S., Agronomy/Weed Science, University of Nebraska-Lincoln. December 1985
Thesis: Response of fieldbeans (Phaseolus vulgaris) to reduced rates of 2,4-D and dicamba.

B.S., Agronomy/Crop Protection, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. August 1980


My Extension and Research Program focuses on integrated weed management in dryland small grain production in eastern Washington. I will focus on the troublesome weeds in each of the three rainfall zones of eastern Washington, i.e., low, medium, and high. This will include the winter annual grass weeds such as downy brome (Bromus tectorum), jointed goatgrass (Aegilops cylindrica), feral rye (Secale cereale), Italian ryegrass (Lolium multiflorum), and rattail fescue (Vulpia myuros); as well as some of the troublesome warm-season broadleaf weeds in small grains and/or fallow such as mayweed chamomile (Anthemis cotula), Russian-thistle (Salsola tragus), prickly lettuce (Lactuca serriola), rush skeletonweed (Chondrilla juncea), and smooth scouringrush (Equisetum laevigatum). The use of herbicides in conjunction with cultural practices such as crop rotation, plant population, row spacing, and fertility will be investigated as will the use tillage, when necessary. Herbicide-resistant weeds are a major concern in the region and integrated weed management strategies must be devised to deal with existing herbicide resistance issues and slow the development of new herbicide-resistant biotypes. As part of my Extension appointment, I provide leadership for the WSU Extension Dryland Cropping Systems Team. One of our major projects has been the development of the Wheat and Small Grains Website, where growers and consultants can find all the information and decision tools that WSU Extension has related to wheat and small grains production and marketing.

Associates in Research

Mark Thorne
Henry Wetzel

Recent Publications

Fischer, J.W., M.E. Thorne, and D.J. Lyon. 2020. Weed-sensing technology modifies fallow control of rush skeletonweed (Chondrilla juncea). Weed Technol. 34:857-862.

Gill, K.S., N. Kumar, H.S. Randhawa, A.H. Carter, J. Yenish, C.F. Morris, B.-K Baik, R.W. Higginbotham, S.O. Guy, D.A. Engle, X.M. Chen, T.D. Murray, and D.J. Lyon. 2020. Registration of ‘Curiosity CL+’ soft white winter wheat. J. Plant Registr. 14:377-387.

Beres, B.L., J.L. Hatfield, J.A. Kirkegaard, S.D. Eigenbrode, W.L. Pan, R.P. Lollato, J.R. Hunt, S. Strydhorst, K. Porker, D. Lyon, J. Ransom, and J. Wiersma. 2020. Toward a better understanding of genotype x environment x management interactions – A global wheat initiative agronomic research strategy. Front. Plant Sci.

Gill, K.S., N. Kumar, H.S. Randhawa, A.H. Carter, J. Yenish, C.F. Morris, B.-K Baik, R.W. Higginbotham, S.O. Guy, D.A. Engle, X.M. Chen, T.D. Murray, and D. Lyon. 2020. Registration of ‘Mela CL+’ soft white winter wheat. J. Plant Registr. 14:144-152.

Lyon, D.J., A.G. Hulting, J. Barroso, and J.M. Campbell. 2020. Integrated management of downy brome in winter wheat. (PNW668 revision).

Lyon, D. J., A.G. Hulting, J. Barroso, and J.M. Campbell. 2020. Integrated management of feral rye in winter wheat (PNW660 revision).

Lyon, D.J., M.E. Thorne, P. Jha, V. Kumar, and T. Waters. 2019. Volunteer buckwheat control in wheat. Crop Forage Turfgrass Manage. doi:10.2134/cftm2019.05.0033.

Barroso, J., D.J. Lyon, and T. Prather. 2019. Russian thistle management in a wheat-fallow crop rotation. (PNW492).

Lyon, D.J, M.E. Swanson, F.L. Young, and T. Coffey. 2018. Jointed goatgrass biomass and spikelet production increases in no-till winter wheat. Crop Forage Turfgrass Manage. doi:10.2134/cftm2018.04.0031.

Mallory-Smith, C., A.R. Kniss, D.J. Lyon, and R.S. Zemetra. 2018. Jointed goatgrass (Aegilops cylindrica): A review. Weed Sci. 66:562-573.

Walsh, M.J., J.C. Broster, L.M. Schwartz-Lazaro, J.K. Norsworthy, A.S. Davis, B.D. Tidemann, H.J. Beckie, D.J. Lyon, N. Soni, P. Neve, and M.V. Bagavathiannan. 2018. Opportunities and challenges for harvest weed seed control in global cropping systems. Pest Manag. Sci. 74:2235-2245.

San Martín, C., D.J. Lyon, J. Gourlie, H.C. Wetzel, and J. Barroso. 2018. Weed control with bicyclopyrone + bromoxynil in wheat. Crop Forage Turfgrass Manage. 4:180011. doi:10.2134/cftm2018.02.0011.

Spring, J.F., M.E. Thorne, I.C. Burke, and D.J. Lyon. 2018. Rush skeletonweed (Chondrilla juncea) control in Pacific Northwest winter wheat. Weed Technol. 32:360-363.

Hauvermale, A.L., K.N. Race, N.C. Lawrence, L. Koby, D.J. Lyon, and I.C. Burke. 2018. A mayweed chamomile growing degree day model for the Inland Pacific Northwest. (FS306E).

Lyon, D.J., D.A. Ball, and A.G. Hulting. 2018. Rattail fescue: Biology and management in Pacific Northwest wheat cropping systems. (PNW613).

Lyon, D.J., I.C. Burke, and J.M. Campbell. 2018. Integrated management of mustard species in wheat production systems. (PNW703).

Kumar, V., J.F. Spring, P. Jha*, D.J. Lyon, and I.C. Burke. 2017. Glyphosate-resistant Russian-thistle (Salsola tragus) identified in Montana and Washington. Weed Technol. 31:238-251.

Lyon, D.J., I.C. Burke, A.G. Hulting, and J.M. Campbell. 2017. Integrated management of mayweed chamomile in wheat and pulse production systems. (PNW695).

Nielsen, D.C., D.J. Lyon, and J.J. Miceli-Garcia. 2017. Replacing fallow with forage triticale in a dryland wheat-corn-fallow rotation may increase profitability. Field Crops Res. 203:227-237.

Hansen, N.C., B.L. Allen, S. Anapalli, R.E. Blackshaw, D.J. Lyon, and S. Machado. 2017. Dryland agriculture in North America. In: Farooq, M. and Siddique K.H.M.  (eds). Innovations in dryland agriculture. Cham, Springer, pp. 415-441.

Calderon, F.J., D. Nielsen, V. Acosta-Martinez, M. Vigil, and D. Lyon. 2016. Cover crop and irrigation effects on soil microbial communities and enzymes in semiarid agroecosystems of the Central Great Plains of North America. Pedosphere: 26:192-205.

Hurisso, T.T., U. Norton, J.B. Norton, J. Odhiambo, S. J. Del Grosso, G.W. Hergert, and D.J. Lyon. 2016. Dryland soil greenhouse gases and yield-scaled emissions in no-till and organic winter wheat-fallow systems. Soil Sci. Soc. Am. J. 80:178-192.

Nielsen, D.C., D.J. Lyon, R.K. Higgins, G.W. Hergert, J.D. Holman, and M.F. Vigil. 2016. Cover crop effect on subsequent wheat yield in the Central Great Plains. Agron. J. 108:243-256.

Lyon, D.J., D.R. Huggins, and J.F. Spring. 2016. Windrow burning eliminates Italian ryegrass (Lolium perenne ssp. multiflorum) seed viability. Weed Technol. 30:279-283.

Lyon, D.J., and I.C. Burke. 2016. Integrated management of prickly lettuce in wheat production systems. (PNW688).

Timely Topics

2020 Weed Control Report Now Available

The 2020 WSU Weed Control Report is now available on the Wheat and Small Grains website. Drew Lyon and Ian Burke, WSU weed scientists, manage numerous field studies to evaluate new herbicides, and new uses of older herbicides, to manage weeds of concern to dryland farmers in eastern Washington. Their research is partially funded by the Washington Grain Commission. These studies are summarized in the annual WSU Weed Control Report. The 2020 report summarizes 32 field studies conducted across eastern Washington in winter wheat (13 studies), spring wheat (2 studies), chemical fallow (11 studies), chickpea (3 studies), and fall-sown dry pea (3 studies).

Updated PNW Extension Publication on Downy Brome Now Available

Integrated Management of Downy Brome in Winter Wheat (PNW668) has been updated. Downy brome, also known as cheatgrass, is a troublesome weed in winter wheat production systems throughout the PNW. Integrated Management of Downy Brome in Winter Wheat was originally published in 2015. Since then, two new promising technologies have been introduced to the marketplace: 1) the CoAXium wheat production system and 2) harvest weed seed control. The revised PNW668 includes information on how to incorporate these two new technologies into an integrated weed management program for downy brome. If you are concerned about downy brome, be sure to download and read a copy of the revised PNW Extension publication.

Weeders of the West

Herbicide Resistance: Looking Back and Forward

As I watch the snow falling outside my basement window – COVID-19 has driven me from my university office to my basement – I find myself not only reflecting back on the 2020 crop season but back across my now 30 years as an Extension specialist. When I started as the Extension Dryland Cropping Systems Specialist at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Panhandle Research and Extension Center in Scottsbluff in 1990, the winter annual grass weed triumvirate of downy bromejointed goatgrass, and feral rye (a.k.a. volunteer rye) were the bane of every wheat grower. This was before Clearfield or CoAXium wheat production systems existed and before Maverick herbicide was released. I remember telling growers that it was highly unlikely that they would ever have an herbicide that would selectively control these winter annual grass weeds in winter wheat. I thought this was particularly true for jointed goatgrass, which is closely related to wheat, sharing the D genome in common.

Here They Come Again

Wild oats were not a problem I experienced in my 22 years in western Nebraska. When I accepted my current position at WSU in 2012, I did some reading to familiarize myself with the weed issues I might be faced with. There were numerous scientific papers from the region on wild oats, so I thought it would be one of the weed species I would need to address. However, as I drove around eastern Washington talking to farmers and county Extension faculty, I saw very few fields with wild oats in them and nobody mentioned wild oats as a major concern. I could see wild oats growing along roadsides and field edges, but only occasionally in fields. Consequently, I took wild oats off my list of concerns and began work on other grass weed issues in wheat such as downy bromeItalian ryegrass, and rattail fescue.

Fluroxypyr is Everywhere!

Have you noticed that you can’t turn around without bumping into a new herbicide product containing fluroxypyr? Fluroxypyr is a synthetic auxin (Group 4) in the pyridine carboxylic acid family, along with picloram (Tordon 22K) and clopyralid (Stinger). Fluroxypyr was first introduced into the wheat market in Starane herbicide, now sold as Starane Ultra herbicide.

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