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Palmer Amaranth Identification

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Palmer Amaranth Identification

Palmer Amaranth (Amaranthus Palmeri): Noxious Weed

Palmer Amaranth is classified as a prohibited noxious weed by a growing number of states including Iowa, Ohio, Delaware, and Minnesota. It poses a significant problem due to its resistance to multiple herbicides and similar appearance to other Amaranthus species. Its seed is spread by water movement, wildlife, or agricultural practices including plowing and harvesting.

  How to Submit a Sample  


Palmer Amaranth Identification with Eurofins

Eurofins BioDiagnostics Inc. has developed and validated three tests for Palmer Amaranth identification depending on your testing requirements. Our testing options provide useful tools for the assessment of Palmer Amaranth contamination.

Single Seed/Leaf Testing:

For testing individual Amaranth seeds, we offer a highly specific and low-cost probe-based PCR test to identify Palmer Amaranth. Each seed submitted will be reported as either positive or negative for Palmer Amaranth. Testing individual seeds provides higher confidence that no Palmer Amaranth is present because each seed is confirmed to be positive or negative.

Pooled Seed Testing:

To offer a cost-effective PCR test, seeds from one lot can be combined into a pool of up to 25 seeds. Each pool will be reported as either positive or negative for Palmer Amaranth. This pooled seed test is a cost-effective option for testing larger numbers of seeds from an individual lot, and may allow for a greater assessment of seed lot contamination.

Species Identification Test:

For species identification, Eurofins BioDiagnostics Inc. offers Internal Transcribed Spacer (ITS) sequencing. This test can be used for the identification of single seed or leaf as either Palmer Amaranth, other Amaranth species, or as a non-Amaranth species. ITS sequencing offers the benefit that seeds from other genera can be identified. This option is the best choice if there is uncertainty that the seed or leaf is Amaranth.


Testing Schemes

  • PCR testing of single seed/leaf tissue: $10 per seed with a minimum of $50 for any samples of 5 seeds or less per submission
  • PCR testing pool of up to 25 seeds: Orders of 1 to 5 pools $50 per pool
  • PCR testing pool of up to 25 seeds: Orders of greater than 5 pools $30 per pool
  • Species Identification testing using ITS sequencing for confirmation testing: Contact your Eurofins BioDiagnostics representative for specific pricing considerations


How to Submit a Sample

Amaranthus seed found in a 25,000 seed Noxious Weed exam should be submitted for DNA testing to obtain a statistically accurate report of the Amaranthus germplasm in the lot. Well-developed seeds, either individually or in pools of up to 25 seeds may be submitted for testing.

  • Submit seeds from each seed lot in either coin envelopes or clear plastic baggies with sample information and number of seeds listed on each bag. Each seed or pool will be entered as a single sample and results will be issued on a single seed or pool basis.
  • The turn-around time for any of these Amaranth tests is 10 business days from receipt of sample.


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