Weed scientists stress diversification

Efforts continue statewide and nationwide to educate producers about herbicide resistance and weed management.

At a weed management field day near Lincoln, Nebraska, we asked guest speaker Vince Davis, a weed scientist from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, if he thinks the industry is starting to get a handle on the problem.

“I don’t know if we’re starting to get a handle or not,” Davis says. “I think the needle is starting to move in the right direction.”

Davis stresses the need to diversify weed control programs and use integrated tactics to manage weeds. And even though there appear to be some promising new herbicides and herbicide traits coming down the pipe, Davis says that message won’t change.

“I really hope that we’ve started to learn our message that it’s just not about new herbicides and new herbicide traits. We really have to integrate systems and include different things like cultural practices, as well as crop rotation” Davis says.

“What those practices are going to be are going to change from system to system, but we really have to find ways to diversify beyond just simple herbicide programs.”

AUDIO: Vince Davis (3:42 MP3)

Lowell Sandell, a University of Nebraska Extension weed scientist, says seven weed species are now resistant to several groups of herbicides in Nebraska

“We’re really kind of focused on waterhemp and in some areas Palmer Amaranth as well—some of the pigweed species,” Sandell says. “Because they come up later in the year, they seem to be becoming a very big challenge in soybean production.”

Sandell says the growing number of weeds that are showing multiple resistance—resistance to more than one herbicide site of action—is a growing concern.

AUDIO: Lowell Sandell (4:16 MP3)


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