Application Revisited

At the Commodity Classic meeting in Nashville, TN, I got to see an old friend of CropLife® magazine, Dr. Robert Wolf. Dr. Worf has been toiling away for years doing research on the best products and practices for mitigating spray drift.

It’s certainly not the most scintillating topic we cover in the pages of this publication, but articles we’ve run over the years focused on best application practices have always garnered wide readership and appreciation.

So it was really great to see Dr. Wolf getting a lot of attention from major crop protection companies and agriculture media outlets at Commodity Classic. The big driver of this new found popularity is two-fold. The impending release of crops that feature dicamba- and 2,4-D-tolerant traits will lead to a broader use of these stalwart herbicides, which are in the process of getting formulations makeovers. Also, to be frank, the Roundup Ready system in its weed-crunching heyday did not require the level of attention to detail that will be needed when these new biotech traits come to market.

“Applicators have had a real easy way of going about applying products,” said Dr. Wolf. “We just put glyphosate in the tank and go to the field. Now, we’re talking about some new tank mix combinations, premix materials, different compounds and chemistries.” And while we’re at it, there will be more discussions about the speed of travel, the height of the boom above the target, the spray pressure, the selection of nozzles … all the nitty gritty details that the effectiveness of glyphosate allowed to be somewhat compromised are again coming into sharp relief.

BASF, which announced its dicamba reformulation called Engenia at the Commodity Classic, is sponsoring Dr. Wolf’s educational tour called the On Target Application Academy — coming to an ag event near you. He will have his spray table in tow and will be really eager to get the industry’s spraying practices back up to snuff.

The focus of the training is on growers, whose too often conspicuous application of glyphosate is most in need of correction and education. But I think the renewed attention on the need for proper herbicide application bodes well for retailers who provide custom application.

While these hybrids are still a few years from full commercialization, you can see that the complexity of applying herbicides is going to increase. And you can visualize an increasing role as your grower-customers’ partner in weed management.

Look for our old friend Dr. Wolf sometime this summer — he’s ready to lend a hand.

Speaking of old friends, I was saddened to learn of the passing of Scot Sparks, the seed guru at Hintzsche Fertilizer in Maple Park, IL. You never forget who was kind and sharing to you when you first started out a new job. And Scot was all that when I came to him in the late 1990s while trying to figure out the seed market.

Although he was not comfortable at all, he let me take a picture of him in front of some bulk seed bins, for which I’m sure he took some ribbing. He taught me a lot about the good and the bad, the ups and the frustrations, with great patience. I, along with the Hintzsche family, will miss him greatly.
Rest in peace, Scot.

Leave a Reply

Paul Schrimpf Stories

Paul SchrimpfWorking With Walmart
June 2, 2014
It's critical for agriculture to have seats at the table as the mega-retailer works out its definition of sustainability. Read More

Trending Articles

Matt Hopkins15 Best New Agriculture Apps Worth Downloading In 2014
December 16, 2013
These latest agriculture apps are sure to help ag professionals do their jobs more efficiently in 2014 and beyond. Read More
Seed/BiotechMonsanto Offers New Support For Ferguson, Area Communities
October 8, 2014
Monsanto Co. has committed $1 million in new support for several collaborative efforts in Ferguson, MO, and surrounding communities in North St. Louis County. Read More
Seed/BiotechUnapproved Genetically Modified Wheat Found In Montana
October 3, 2014
USDA reports that one year after discovery of Monsanto's unapproved wheat in a single Oregon field disrupted U.S. wheat export sales, the GMO wheat has again been found in Montana. Read More
Equipment2014 Product Of The Year Voting
September 19, 2014
Many new products were introduced to the ag retail marketplace this year. From this group, CropLife IRON and its consulting partners have selected five finalists for the Product of the Year award. Please cast your vote today to help us determine the winner. Read More
FertilizerFall Fertility 2014: Forecasting Fertilizer Use
September 7, 2014
Great crops this year have tapped the soil, and fall work is definitely called for, but how challenging will that get? Read More
CropLife 100CHS To Build $3 Billion Fertilizer Plant In North Dakota
September 5, 2014
The fertilizer plant in Spiritwood will be the single largest investment in CHS history, as well as the single largest private investment project ever undertaken in North Dakota. Read More

Latest News

Seed/BiotechSyngenta Ranked A Top 10 Biotech Employer For Third tim…
October 20, 2014
Syngenta ranked in the top 10 among the world’s top biotech employers, according to an annual survey conducted by Science magazine. Read More
CropLife 100Wheat Growers Break Ground For New Facility At Kennebec
October 20, 2014
Wheat Growers has broke ground for a state-of-the-art shuttle loader grain handling, fertilizer and agronomy facility in Kennebec, SD. Read More
FertilizerVerdesian Life Sciences Signs Agreement With Los Alamos…
October 20, 2014
Verdesian Life Sciences has signed a licensing agreement with Los Alamos National Laboratory to develop and market LANL’s latest nitrogen enhancement technology for plants. Read More
MicronutrientsStoller Group Announces Groundbreaking At New Office Bu…
October 20, 2014
Jerry Stoller, founder and president of Stoller Group, announced the groundbreaking at the site of the company’s future headquarters in Read More
Crop InputsBioSafe Systems Opens New Production Facility In Nevada
October 20, 2014
BioSafe Systems has completed construction of a state-of-art production facility in Sparks, NV, for its line of activated peroxygen products. Read More
Crop InputsPlatform Specialty Products To Acquire Arysta LifeScien…
October 20, 2014
Once the acquisition is complete, Platform Specialty Products will combine Arysta LifeScience with previously acquired companies Agriphar and Chemtura Crop Solutions. Read More
Seed/BiotechEPA Approves Dow’s Enlist Duo Herbicide
October 15, 2014
The Enlist Weed Control System, breakthrough technology to fight resistant and tough weeds, has received the long-awaited green light from federal regulatory authorities. Read More
MicronutrientsGypsum On Farms Could Help Keep Water Clean, Not Green
October 14, 2014
Gypsum, which has roots in the past as a farm soil treatment, also may have a bright future, and not just as a booster of crops but also as a protector of water. Read More
Photo credit: The United Soybean Board/The Soybean Checkoff.
Crop InputsVerdesian Grows Sales Staff
October 14, 2014
The new account managers will drive sales growth and support relationships with key customers in the plant nutrition and seed treatment and inoculants product categories. Read More
WebinarsUpcoming Webinars
October 14, 2014
Register for one of our upcoming Webinars or access our archive of past Webinars to view recordings of presentations that may be of interest to you. Read More
CropLife 100The Andersons Purchases Six Grain Elevators, Four Agron…
October 14, 2014
The Andersons has acquired Auburn Bean and Grain of Auburn, MI, which will increase the storage capacity of its Grain Group by about 13%. Read More
StewardshipThree Ohio Ag Retailers Honored With 4R Certification
October 13, 2014
The 4R Nutrient Stewardship Certification Program has announced its first three agriculture nutrient service providers to achieve certified status. Read More
Eric SfiligojEntering Agriculture’s New Phase
October 13, 2014
The market’s giddy ride the past few years might be coming to an end in 2015, warns one industry insider. Read More
Eric SfiligojWar And Green Peace
October 11, 2014
A one-time member of Green Peace recently explained why he left the organization after 15 years. Read More
StewardshipCover Crops Add To Farm Sustainability
October 10, 2014
Farmers nationwide find cover crops to be a tool that helps groundwater, prevents erosion, builds soil quality and complements existing best management practices. Read More
EquipmentMeeting Changing Liquid Storage Needs
October 10, 2014
Tank and containment choices are expanding with shifts in farming practices and the economy. Read More
StewardshipEDF Launches Initiative To Reduce Fertilizer Pollution …
October 9, 2014
The effort will engage farmers and businesses throughout the supply chain to transform the way fertilizer-dependent grain crops are grown and sourced. Read More
ManagementMACA 2014: The State Of The Agricultural Industry, And …
October 9, 2014
The trade association’s annual gathering featured speakers from across agriculture and beyond. Read More