Residual weed control will be the name of the game in 2020.
“That’s right, and it’s going to be absolutely critical to start aggressively in the spring,” says Brandon Schrage, Technical Service Manager with FMC. He says with late harvest last year, weeds along ditches that went to seed, and all the prevent plant acres where weeds went to seed, the weed complex this spring will be very difficult.
“Not just because of your water hemp and palmer amaranth contributing to that seed bank, but also a lot of weeds that we typically don’t have trouble with when we can get them controlled,” he explained. “For instance, if we had a prevented plant acre, we’re probably going to be seeing some cocklebur, some lambs quarter, maybe velvet leaf, and so having that complex is going to require a strong residual program in the spring.”
Schrage says if you don’t go aggressive including residuals, there could be serious consequences.
“As we see the amaranth species become more prevalent in the Midwest, as we see a lot of these weeds like velvet leaf and grass, stuff that dicamba has never been great on, relying on those post only options is going to get us in a real pickle. Now, our advantage is, taking palmer amaranth for example, the longevity in the soil is not that long, so if we can get sufficient weed control for a couple of years, we can bring that seed bank real low and help us for the future. If we’re relying only on post, it’s going to end up biting them and could cost them land value.”
Schrage recommends getting burndown operations underway this spring as soon as possible when soils warm, and plan to get a residual applied to help stretch to your post applications.
“This could be done in a number of ways,” he says. “A lot of legacy Authority brands can be put on pre-plant. The idea is to get that residual down before we start seeing breakage. When we’re relying on post-only systems we’re selecting for resistance, we’re getting insufficient weed control, and that’s what’s going to give us trouble further on.”
FMC’s Authority® Edge herbicide is new this year and controls tough weeds and grasses like waterhemp, palmer pigweed, morning glories and other small-seeded broadleaf weeds and grasses. Learn more on this new product still awaiting Indiana state approval here.