This Week’s Headlines
Growers consider steps to combat herbicide-resistant weeds
By BRUCE HOTCHKISS
SUDLERSVILLE, Md. (Sept. 2) — What’s an answer to herbicide resistant weeds? The plow?
“Farmers are going back to tillage,” said Steve Moore of Sudlersville, Md. “It’s coming back in style.”
Moore is one of Maryland’s two members of the United Soybean Board which has launched a national campaign to make farmers aware of the growing threat of weeds which defy the usual methods of combat.
It’s called “Take Action.” It’s an industry-wide effort to help arm farmers with tools to combat herbicide-resistant weeds.
It was showcased in late August by the United Soybean Board’s at the 2014 Farm Progress Show in Iowa.
Soy checkoff farmer-leaders were on hand to discuss the checkoff’s role in “Take Action” and the practices they and other soybean farmers were implementing on their farms to fight weeds.
Moore said that Palmer amaranth currently is challenging soybean farmers in this area, particularly in Caroline County. It had been susceptible to Roundup.
Not any more, Moore said.
Pigweed, mare’s tail and waterhemp are also causing problems. Roundup had been the answer.
Again, not any more.
The chemicals 2,4-D and Banvil were effective but crops on which they have been used are banned in many countries in Europe and Asia. Also, they have to be used at least 30 days before planting, Moore observed.
For weeds now resistant to the chemical that had been traditionally used on them for control, farmers can mix up what’s called “a cocktail” of various chemical, or simply get the plow or some tillage tool out of the barn.
So persistent has the problem of resistance become that the Weed Science Society of America has scheduled a national scientific summit on herbicide resistant weeds.
It will be held Sept. 10 in the auditorium of the National Academy of Sciences Building, 2101 Constitution Ave. NW in Washington from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The program will include nine presentations.
Farmers can access the live webcast on Sept. 10 by following a link that will be posted at http://wssa.net/2014/08/resistance-summit-ii.