Three years’ worth of data gleaned from growers of LibertyLink soybeans tell Bayer CropScience that LibertyLink acres can be expected to expand based on positive grower experiences and competitive yields. The data, which was collected from 2010 to 2012 by Beck Ag, included information about the application rates, weather conditions, weed control and yields of approximately 900 soybean growers in the Midwest and Southern U.S.
“The majority of growers in both the Midwest and the South reported that their LibertyLink beans yielded better than or equal to farm averages, according to the survey,” said Diego Angelo, U.S. director of soybean operations for Bayer CropScience. “We were especially pleased that even in drought-stricken areas, many LibertyLink growers commented on how well their beans performed compared to other systems.” In 2012, survey results showed 70% of growers saw yields as good as or better than on-farm averages.
One of those growers was Bryan Curry who farms near Olmsted, IL, in the southern part of the state. Curry and his dad planted 100% LibertyLink beans in 2012, having seen LibertyLink outyield Roundup Ready soybeans on their farm the previous year. “We only got about three inches of rain between April and August this year, and we had to replant some beans due to the severe conditions,” said Curry. “Despite the setback, our LibertyLink beans averaged really well this year.”
Curry added that Liberty herbicide is the only herbicide that works to control glyphosate-resistant marestail and waterhemp on his no-till beans. “We had severe issues with marestail, and [now] that is absolutely gone. Liberty has absolutely killed it. Marestail is a thing of the past. I recommend the LibertyLink system to any grower who wants to see good yields and clean fields.”
In fact, according to the data from Beck Ag’s 2012 survey, 94% of LibertyLink soybean growers say they plan to continue their use of the LibertyLink system, including Liberty herbicide, over the next five years.
“As we’ve learned, rotation is key,” said Eric Peters, product manager for Liberty herbicide. “Rotating crops and modes of action will help maintain the effectiveness of herbicides by preventing or slowing the development of resistance. One of the benefits of the LibertyLink system is the unique mode of action offered by Liberty herbicide, which is effective against weeds that are now resistant to glyphosate.”
Beck Ag’s survey shows that 243 of the growers surveyed in 2012 said they had weeds on their farm that were “tough to kill,” predominantly Palmer pigweed and marestail in the South, and marestail, waterhemp and giant ragweed in the Midwest. At the same time, 87% of LibertyLink growers rated the performance of Liberty herbicide as “excellent” or “good,” even against these tough weeds.
“The Beck Ag survey really reinforced for us the varying needs of growers in different regions – even different counties,” added Angelo. “But while there were differences, we saw that the LibertyLink system helped growers across the board boost their overall ROI through competitive yields and weed resistance management.”