When faced with the challenge of preparing for next year’s crop, weed control planning done now can help growers get the most out of next year’s acre.
Weeds are still a grower’s No.1 enemy, bringing losses of around $95 billion a year in lost global food production. As the 2009 season comes to an end, now is an excellent time for growers to identify their weed control challenges and modify their weed control program for cleaner fields in 2010.
“Growers looking back on their 2009 season may note an increasing trend of more difficult to control broadleaf weeds and realize they need to make changes to their control program,” said Dan Westberg, BASF technical marketing manager.
New solutions, like the recently introduced Kixor herbicide technology http://www.kixorherbicide.com/ from BASF, are designed to control the toughest broadleaf weed control challenges facing growers today. The family of products powered by Kixor recently received federal registration by the Environmental Protection Agency, and will be available this coming spring in most states.
“Crops typically grow slowly in the spring due to cool, wet conditions making it a prime time for early emerging weeds to take over and threaten the crop’s ability to get firmly established,” said Westberg. “Treating early with a herbicide that offers fast, complete burndown, like a product in the Kixor family, means growers are able to control those weeds before they can threaten yield potential.”
Research published by Ohio State University in 2003 clearly demonstrates the need for treating early to protect crops. In corn, results show that weeds as little as four inches tall have the potential to cause a 4.5 bushel-per-acre yield loss.
According to Westberg, certain weeds, like glyphosate-resistant marestail, must be controlled prior to emergence of some crops, such as soybeans, where effective in-crop postemergence options are lacking. Failure to get complete burndown of marestail in soybeans may result in a mess for the rest of the season. Growers can control troublesome broadleaf weeds with preplant burndown applications using Kixor herbicide technology before they begin competing for valuable nutrients and threatening a grower’s yield potential.
Making sure a herbicide provides both rapid burndown and residual control is another step growers can take to control resistant weeds and manage their fields more efficiently. With Kixor herbicide, growers can expect control of tough broadleaf weeds three-to-five times faster than glyphosate and 2,4-D, allowing growers to plant quicker and manage their fields more effectively.
“Growers are very particular about having clean fields. Kixor helps control weeds fast and leaves fields looking clean, so growers can be confident and proud of the way they manage their farm,” said Westberg.
While rapid burndown can mean controlling weeds at a faster rate, using a herbicide such as Kixor that also provides residual control gives growers the peace of mind of knowing they have some level of protection in their field. This protection means fewer in-season postemergence applications that have to be timed around wind, rain and other scheduling conflicts.
“The rapid burndown and residual control offered by Kixor helps growers manage their fields more effectively and efficiently for a better return on investment,” said Westberg. “These are all benefits that growers may miss without a strong, early weed control program that includes an effective herbicide.”
As planning begins for growers to get the most out of every acre next season, they should consider the impact an effective early weed control program can have on maximizing yield potential and return on investment.
Further information can be found on the Web at http://agproducts.basf.us.