The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service in Arkansas has received additional funds to help farmers combat resistant pigweed. Producers have until July 6, 2012, to apply for financial assistance.

Herbicide resistance in weeds has become one of the most challenging issues facing the agriculture industry. Palmer amaranth, commonly called pigweed, has become one of the most troublesome weeds in the South because of its fast growth rate, high seed production and development of herbicide resistance.

Approved applications will receive funds to hire a crop consultant who is also a registered technical service provider with NRCS. The TSP will assist the producer by developing a conservation activity plan that will target herbicide resistant weeds. Producers will receive incentives to manage their resistance weeds in conservation tillage systems to protect soil and water quality in conjunction with educational components. 

“The overreliance on one class of herbicide for the control of weeds has accelerated the resistance issues seen in multiple states in the south,” said John Lee, an NRCS agronomist. “In Arkansas, heavy infestation of glyphosate resistant pigweed has been reported in multiple counties. Some producers may revert to more mechanical means of weed control to address this problem. Reverting back to conventional tillage systems could impact the benefits gained from conservation tillage systems.”

To apply for assistance, visit your local USDA/NRCS field service center. To locate the local office, visit www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/main/national/contact/local. For more information about NRCS programs, visit www.ar.nrcs.usda.gov/.