When it comes to herbicide-resistant pigweeds -- waterhemp and Palmer amaranth -- even one weed left behind is one too many with these prolific seed producers. And, as weed-resistance problems continue to rise, controlling them requires a new approach.
BASF has launched Operation Weed Eradication, an industrywide initiative to help growers eliminate weeds. "A weed-free future begins with an eradication mindset," points out Jared Roskamp, BASF technical service representative. "It means you don't leave any weeds in the field to replenish the weed seed bank."
The initiative focuses on three areas:
1) cultural and mechanical practices: tillage, crop rotation, narrow rows, row cultivator
2) chemical control: rotating chemistries, including multiple effective sites of action, using pre- and post-herbicides with layered residuals, following all application requirements
3) eradication diligence: seed destruction, hand-weeding escapes, field edges, ponds and ditches.
"It's a process where growers have to devise a three- to five-year plan in order to eradicate weeds," Roskamp explains. He compares it to a personalized, tailored journey where each grower has different start and end points. "The first year is the toughest, and then it gets progressively easier."
BASF will support growers with expertise and herbicide solutions. The company also plans to assemble a coalition of industry leaders, develop a specific eradication customer offering and introduce an educational initiative to support the effort. For more information, visit www.operationweederadication.com.
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