Weed Management Program Profiles

Here’s quick look at weed control strategies and their cost.

Over the past 20 years many growers — and perhaps dealers — have been relieved to leave behind the days of managing multiple products and approaches for weed control. Glyphosate, and later, glyphosate-resistant seed, made everyone’s job easier. But the industry is now returning to the host of crop protection tools developed over decades — though this time with an eye toward more careful planning.

To that end, chemical manufacturers, weed scientists and other stakeholders in agriculture have been working to engineer new, sometimes more complex herbicide programs. The goal is to both kill weeds and preserve effective products. Dealers are seeking out the best strategies, and the effort takes resources and patience. One proof of the challenge lies in the fact that Midwest universities’ herbicide guides include bountiful pages and charts covering current products and their uses.

Dealers we talked with suggested it can be difficult to nail down a typical cost per acre because so many options are available. Kevin Mainord, sales and marketing director with MRM Ag Services, East Prairie, MO, puts the range at $18 to $50 depending on past weed pressure and the level of control desired by growers. Plans incorporate products with varied modes of action throughout a season.

Current Approach To Corn

In many cases, dealers recommend a program start with fall burndown products to prevent winter annuals from germinating, says Shane Eck, location manager at Mid Kansas Cooperative (MKC), Lindsborg, KS. He also suggests a preplant/preemergence application come spring to kill existing weeds as well as prevent other weeds from germinating.

A postemergence application would be next — prior to canopy — to kill existing weeds. A key with post applications is timing. “It’s important to follow the label and not spray weeds that are larger than the recommended height,” points out Eck. Larger, more mature weeds have a better chance of surviving off-label applications. Specifically, Midwest extension weed specialists say products should go on before weeds exceed two to four inches to avoid excessive crop competition.

Hitting weeds when they’re small with the right rate is also tantamount. While a lower rate may actually take out virtually all of a particular field’s weeds, the ones that do survive will reproduce and can contribute to the development of resistant populations.

Mainord offered a quick summary of his company’s corn programs: Preemergence product applied behind the planter (“most premix products work”), then an early postemergence application of compounds such as dicamba/diflufenzopyr premix and glyphosate.

Jeff Consbruck, seed lead, CPI Coop, Hastings, NE, says that “in our corn programs we really encourage a two-pass approach. We try and use multiple modes of action and get the first pass on as early as the
weather permits.”

In fact, the efficacy of a one-pass program made at 1) preemergence with a residual herbicide or 2) postemergence with a tank mix of glyphosate and a residual product — raises doubts for Micheal Owen, weed science extension specialist with Iowa State University. “Regardless of what some advertising suggests, no herbicide treatment will provide full season control consistently, and more importantly, meet grower expectations,” he has commented in the school’s ICM newsletter. An appropriate expectation for a soil-applied herbicide treatment would be six to eight weeks of effective control, he explains. If rates are reduced expect less weed control.

Plans For Soybeans

Here again, it’s vital to start clean, said many of the dealers contacted. As with corn, MKC’s Eck suggests a fall burndown with preemergence control to prevent winter annuals from germinating. Then would come a spring burndown product with residual action. “Some growers like to use a preemergence chemical preplant, while others prefer to use a preemergence application in-crop,” says Eck. “An in-crop application is generally planned prior to canopy.”

Mainord suggests a preplant incorporated product on grass — or for just broadleaf weeds, depending on specific pressure. He also says growers can do an early postemergence application with both a contact and a residual product in the tank.

Consbruck would say soybeans are where his clients are having the most trouble these days. “Starting with a pre is a must anymore, as weeds in our area such as marestail, waterhemp and Palmer amaranth are getting very hard to control.

“Timing is our biggest challenge due to weather conditions and the fact that we are in the middle of applying our corn preemergence products and fertilizer at this time as well,” he adds. “Getting the pre on early ­— such as Enlite, Verdict, Prefix or Sonic — and then coming back with a tank mix of Roundup and another mode of action seems to be what is working in our area.”

Fortunately, research has yielded many non-chemical strategies in the weed wars. For instance, University of Illinois and USDA work has shown that several good cultural practices help: adequate seedbed preparation, adequate fertilization, crop rotation, planting on the proper date, using optimal row widths and seeding at the rate needed for optimal stands.

Their research also confirms that planting in relatively warm soil can help the crop emerge quickly and better compete with weeds. In fact, both corn and soybeans usually compete quite well with most weeds that begin growing beyond the first three to five weeks after planting — so good weed control during that early phase is extremely important. In addition, narrow rows help the crop compete better with weeds. Experts say that if herbicides alone cannot give adequate control, then growers should keep rows wide enough for cultivation.

Topics:

Leave a Reply

Weed Resistance Stories

Weed ResistancePPO Resistant Pigweed Hits The Mid-South
October 1, 2015
If you’re a soybean grower already entangled in troublesome weed resistance in the state of Arkansas, Mississippi or Tennessee, you Read More
Weed ResistanceManagement Strategies That Worked In 2015
October 1, 2015
For better or worse, throughout many regions of the country 2015 provided the optimal growing season conditions for both crops, Read More
Patriot 4440 Sprayer close up
Weed ResistanceManaging Herbicide-Resistant Weeds: The Importance Of ‘A Clean Environment’
October 1, 2015
As the problem of herbicide-resistant weeds has spread, crop protection product suppliers have charged their top researchers with coming up Read More
Adjuvants loading
Weed ResistanceAdjuvants Trending Up For Fighting Weed Resistance
October 1, 2015
Gone with the wind are the days when adding an adjuvant to the spray tank was looked at with major Read More
Top 100 Articles
Elburn Cooperative
CropLife 100Elburn Cooperative Members Vote To Join CHS
December 28, 2015
With 81% of eligible producers voting, 94% cast an affirmative ballot for Elburn Cooperative, a diversified agricultural retailer based out Read More
West Central Cooperative, Jefferson, IA
CropLife 100Farmers Cooperative-West Central Merger Approved
December 21, 2015
The members of Farmers Cooperative Co. (FC), Ames, IA, and West Central Cooperative, Ralston, IA, have both approved the merger Read More
Wheat Growers Innovation Center, Bath, SD
CropLife 100Wheat Growers Opens Innovation Center
December 21, 2015
Wheat Growers’ commitment in providing its farmer-owners with the latest in technological advancements now has a one-of-a-kind focal point, as Read More
CropLife 100ARA Selects The Andersons As 2015 Retailer Of The Year
December 9, 2015
The Agricultural Retailers Association today named Maumee, OH-based The Andersons as its Retailer of the Year for 2015. The award Read More
CPS Washington Court House John Deere Sprayer
CropLife 100Application Equipment Report: It Is Easy Being Green For Top 100 Ag Retailers
December 5, 2015
On The Muppets television show, Kermit the Frog is famous for singing a song about the troubles he encounters in Read More
Fertilizer Bin
CropLife 100Fertilizer Sales: Another Down Year For Top 100 Ag Retailers
December 4, 2015
In pure number terms, the fertilizer category still dominates all crop inputs/services among CropLife 100 ag retailers. In 2015, for Read More
Latest News
EquipmentCase Unveils 2000 Series Early Riser Planter At NFMS
February 10, 2016
Case IH revealed the all-new 2000 Series Early Riser planter to media and attendees at the opening of the National Read More
Syngenta Sign
Crop InputsSyngenta: Keep Ag In Mind During Election Season
February 10, 2016
As presidential candidates stake out their 2016 election platforms and key priorities, growers and their business partners should seek opportunities Read More
Crop InputsMarrone Bio Innovations Submits New Bio-Fungicide For E…
February 9, 2016
Marrone Bio Innovations, Inc. (MBI) today announced that it has submitted a new biological fungicide (MBI-110) to EPA. The broad spectrum Read More
Crop InputsWeed Expert: Adding A Second Herbicide Not Always Easy
February 9, 2016
In my last post, I reviewed some recent research that suggests one of the best ways to delay the evolution Read More
Crop InputsGenetic Literacy Project: Farmers Need More Herbicide C…
February 9, 2016
There are two things that I think just about every weed scientist can agree on, writes Andrew Kniss for The Read More
HerbicidesWeed Expert Warns North Dakota Growers Of Coming Herbic…
February 9, 2016
Ford Baldwin painted a bleak picture of weed control at a recent workshop here exploring the future of ag production, Read More
HerbicidesWSSA Announces New, Updated Free Web Resources
February 9, 2016
Today the Weed Science Society of American (WSSA) announced that new and updated educational materials for both weed scientists and Read More
Soybean field
FungicidesFour Arysta Fungicide Formulations Given FIFRA Approval…
February 8, 2016
Arysta LifeScience North America recently announced the issuance of Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) Section 2(ee) Recommendations for Read More
FungicidesAgri-Fos Systemic Fungicide Plus Receives EPA Registrat…
February 8, 2016
Vivid Life Sciences has announced the EPA registration of Agri-Fos Systemic Fungicide Plus, a highly concentrated active ingredient phosphite fungicide, Read More
Crop InputsBayer Contests EPA’s Decision On Valuable Insecticide F…
February 5, 2016
Crop Science, a division of Bayer, has announced it has refused a request by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to Read More
Wheat Field North Dakota
Seed/BiotechSyngenta Wins Seed Fraud Suit Against South Dakota Grow…
February 5, 2016
Syngenta has obtained a $25,000 settlement from Paul and John Mayclin, Mayclin Farms, Plankinton, SD, in response to their Plant Read More
ManagementOABA Annual Conference Wraps Up In Columbus
February 5, 2016
More than 300 Ohio AgriBusiness Association (OABA) members and industry professionals were on hand to engage in collaborative learning and Read More
Crop InputsBayer To Contest EPA Flubendiamide Decision
February 5, 2016
Crop Science, a division of Bayer, announced today it has refused a request by EPA to voluntarily cancel the uses Read More
Syngenta
Seed/BiotechNot So Fast: ChemChina Syngenta Takeover Could Draw Nat…
February 5, 2016
State-owned China National Chemical Corp. (ChemChina), which plans to buy Swiss seeds and pesticide maker Syngenta, will promptly start preparations Read More
Rendering of Syngenta Seedcare Institute expansion
Seed/BiotechExpansion Of Syngenta’s North America Seedcare In…
February 4, 2016
As demand for seed treatment knowledge and products grows among farmers, retailers and others in the seed industry, Syngenta is Read More
Soybean Field
Industry NewsArysta LifeScience Strengthens Sales Team
February 4, 2016
Arysta LifeScience North America recently announced three new personnel additions: Jake Cook and Peter White are Territory Sales Managers for Read More
Davor Pisk Syngenta COO
Crop InputsSyngenta COO: Why ChemChina Offer Beat Monsanto’s
February 4, 2016
Syngenta Chief Operating Officer Davor Pisk says he is confident the proposed acquisition by ChemChina will ultimately help preserve choice Read More
Young corn plants in soil
Crop InputsKoch Biological Solutions Invests In Pathway Biologic
February 4, 2016
An affiliate of Koch Biological Solutions, LLC has acquired a minority equity position in, and entered into collaboration with, Pathway Read More