Ford Baldwin


Ford Baldwin served as a weed scientist with the University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service from 1974 to 2001. During that time he conducted extensive applied research trials in rice, soybeans, cotton and wheat, and developed weed management recommendations and educational programs for farmers. Since January 2002, Baldwin has been a partner in Practical Weed Consultants with his wife, Tomilea.

Baldwin: Early herbicide programs were simple
When I began my career as a weed scientist in 1974, we had propanil (Stam), Ordram and the phenoxy herbicides in rice, which would seem like a very limited arsenal now. However, we got along quite well with them at the time.
Managing change: learn how to use new weed controls
A huge part of managing change now is going to be learning to use the LibertyLink and Ignite herbicide correctly. At present we are doing a lot of things that are going to contribute to premature failure of the system, says weed scientist Ford Baldwin.
Pigweeds will win if right steps not taken now
My worst fear from five years ago has happened: that is we would not be willing to change until the pigweed populations were back to overpowering levels. That is statewide now.
Spray pigweeds early to be successful
Applying postemergence herbicides too late was the biggest problem in weed control when I began my career and it continues to be today.
Growers must include more diversity to control major weeds
The days of easy weed control are over for the foreseeable future. Everyone from the basic manufacturers to the growers must be on the same diversity page.
Drought will alter weed control programs
Soil residual herbicides have again become a necessary part of a weed control program and they can do some great things — when they work, but without soil moisture for incorporated herbicides or activating rainfall or overhead irrigation for pre-emergence herbicides, they do not work.
Pigweeds flooding many rice fields
Nothing about pigweeds surprises weed scientist Ford Baldwin.
Drift this year’s toughest issue
The tougher weed control calls are beginning to come in, but the toughest issues weed scientist Ford Baldwin has had to deal with in the field this year continue to be drift issues.
Weeds swamp rice after late start
Rice calls are running the gamut from one extreme to the other. The “jailbreaks” are occurring in some fields.
Barnyardgrass, pigweed top weed concerns

My main concerns right now are barnyardgrass control in rice and pigweed control in soybeans. Most other weed problems we can catch back up with even if they have gotten out of hand. On those two, however, if they are not under control early, there is often a run-away situation.

Rein in problem pigweeds
Growers want to get on top of the pigweed problem — either with prevention or by turning around an existing problem.
Flooding delays weed control
As upset as I get just writing about weather problems, I cannot imagine what it is like seeing your own crop under water or wondering when or if you will get to plant.
Rains complicating weed control
A lot of other areas in the Mid-South have been inundated with rains. If the wet weather continues, there will be some difficult weed control situations in all crops.
Glyphosate drift damage to wheat extensive
Glyphosate drift on Arkansas wheat seems to be the more widespread this year than any previous year.
Postemergence herbicide options for rice
After the delayed pre-emergence herbicides, the next step will be early postemergence herbicides. With those, the objective is to kill any weeds that have emerged, and also to get some additional residual into the program.
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