Pioneer Hi-Bred International, Inc., will offer corn growers their choice of three seed-applied insecticides on selected Pioneer brand hybrids for the 2004 planting season. The offering will include Cruiser 5FS seed-applied insecticide for secondary insects, Poncho 250 insecticide for mid-rate control and Poncho 1250 insecticide as the high-rate choice.

This product offering is designed to meet specific insect-control needs and help growers get corn off to a healthy, vigorous start.

“Mid-South corn producers will be particularly interested in the mid-rate, Poncho 250, due to its control of chinch bugs and stink bugs, along with control of secondary soil insects, such as wireworm and white grub,” says Mike Hughes, technical information manager for Pioneer in Huntsville, Ala.

“Seed-applied insecticides have improved a lot in recent years and offer new levels of safety, convenience and efficacy to our growers. We are excited about offering these seed-applied insecticides on Pioneer hybrids.”

For growers seeking economical early-season protection for corn seedlings from only secondary soil insects, Cruiser will be the appropriate seed-applied insecticide available from Pioneer. Cruiser offers protection against insects such as wireworm, white grub, seed corn maggot, flea beetle, southern corn leaf beetle and chinch bug, and is labeled for suppression of cutworm.

Poncho 250, which contains a new compound, clothianidin, as the active ingredient, is the mid-rate option available from Pioneer. According to research from the manufacturer, Gustafson LLC, Poncho 250 controls seed and seedling damage from cutworm, wireworm, white grub, seed corn maggot, flea beetle, chinch bug and other pests.

Poncho 1250, the high-rate offering, will be available for growers who have a history of challenges from corn rootworm and billbug. According to Gustafson, the rate of clothianidin provided in Poncho 1250 offers control of corn rootworm and billbug similar to the control provided by traditional soil-applied insecticides. Poncho 1250 also offers early-season control of secondary insects including black cutworm, wireworm, white grub, seed corn maggot, flea beetle and chinch bug and is a convenient, economical solution for these pests.

“Pioneer has conducted field evaluations of these products since 2001,” explains Murt McLeod, Pioneer agronomy research manager in Windfall, Ind. “Our studies show these products can help growers control the soil insects for which they're labeled, and we're confident growers will benefit from protecting their seed investment with the product most appropriate for their situation. Convenience and user safety are added benefits of these non-restricted use pesticides, compared to traditional soil-applied insecticides.”

The new seed-applied insecticides provide both contact and systemic activity in corn plants and do not rely exclusively on contact and plant-surface coverage. In addition, the treatments arrive at the farm, on the seed and in the bag, eliminating time previously spent loading and calibrating granular and liquid soil-applied insecticide equipment.