Growers are constantly facing pressures to reduce costs while increasing revenue. One place you should not cut costs is with your weed management program, that according to Purdue Professor of Weed Science Dr. Bill Johnson. He says that weed-free, high yielding corn is the key to maximizing returns on herbicide investment.
“I think that’s kind of a pretty important goal that we need to have with any weed control program. You want to try to attain the highest yield possible. It’s not about cutting the cost of the weed control program. It’s about getting the highest yield out of that field that you can.”
Johnson recommends a strong pre-emerge herbicide to combat early season weed stress.
“A pre herbicide with what we call a Group 15, or grass type chloroacetamide herbicide is always better than just atrazine, especially as the post emergent weed control timings are delayed. With the newer products that have that third active ingredient in there, like the Callisto type products, they give you some additional activity on broadleaf weeds as well.”
Johnson warns growers that the return on investment of a strong pre is less when the post treatment is delayed.
He urges farmers to keep using residuals.
“With commodity prices being high, that’s an easier idea for me to sell to an audience. When commodity prices are low, that’s one of the first things that I find many of my clientele wants to take out. You want to choose the products to target your worst weeds and there’s usually not a single herbicide fits every acre in your operation. There are opportunities to use different products on different fields, but obviously sometimes the market forces dictate that we buy all of one product.”
Johnson explains the economics behind a successful weed management program in his presentation from Commodity Classic. You can still register for Commodity Classic through Friday of this week to watch archived sessions through April 30.