Stewardship Strategies Help Manage Resistance
A. Bobby Bachman, product marketing lead for soybeans and cotton, Syngenta Crop Protection, LLC: Herbicide-resistant weeds are rampant in agriculture. According to the latest numbers from the International Survey of Herbicide Resistant Weeds, 255 weed species have evolved to resist 23 of the 26 known herbicide sites of action. These weeds are spread across 92 different crops in 70 countries. U.S. growers alone are battling 164 herbicide-resistant weeds—more than any other country currently included in the survey.*
Even though the numbers are sobering, I’m confident agriculture is up to the challenge of developing strategies that will help lessen the potential impact. By being good stewards of the land and taking proactive approaches to weed management, growers can help defend against resistance, so that their access to effective herbicides currently on the market will continue. A focus on stewardship today will lead to a strong, sustainable agriculture industry tomorrow.
Q. What steps should growers take to properly steward their use of herbicides?
A. With any product, the first step to using it properly is to read and follow the manufacturers’ specified label requirements and recommendations. When developing an effective weed-management and stewardship plan, growers should use herbicides with multiple effective sites of action and overlapping residuals. Particularly in soybeans, it’s important to start clean, using tillage or an effective burndown plus a pre-emergence herbicide application. It’s also important to use a post-emergence application to keep weeds at bay, until soybeans are mature enough to reach canopy. At that point, weeds do not have the ability to effectively compete with the crop for water, light and essential nutrients.
In addition to properly using herbicides, growers should diversify their weed-management programs by planting cover crops, using mechanical weed control and rotating crops. Other proven agronomic practices that can help fortify their efforts include narrowing rows, increasing plant populations and employing sound production strategies that promote overall crop growth and competitive ability.
Q. Why is dicamba an important herbicide tool for soybean growers?
A. Soybean growers across the U.S. need tools like dicamba to fight against tough-to-control resistant weeds. Palmer amaranth, marestail, waterhemp and giant ragweed are some of the most resilient and challenging weeds invading growers’ soybean fields.
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Q. Does Syngenta have any new dicamba tools?
A. A new herbicide from Syngenta—Tavium® Plus VaporGrip® Technology—is now available. It provides contact and residual control of key broadleaf and grass weeds in Roundup Ready 2 Xtend® Soybeans and Bollgard II® XtendFlex® Cotton. Tavium, which is a premix of dicamba and S-metalochlor, helps maintain clean fields by managing major ALS-, PPO- and glyphosate-resistant weeds. With built-in resistance management and the convenience of a premix, Tavium offers flexible application—from preplant through early post-emergence—and fits into a variety of tillage systems and geographies.
In soybeans, Tavium is most effective when used as part of a season-long weed-management program that includes a pre-emergence residual herbicide with multiple effective sites of action, such as Boundary® 6.5 EC, BroadAxe® XC or Prefix® herbicides, followed by an early post-emergence application of Tavium. In cotton, we recommend starting the season with a burndown herbicide, such as Gramoxone® SL 2.0, plus a residual herbicide, such as Caparol® 4L or Cotoran® 4L, followed by Tavium applied early post-emergence. For both crops, Tavium can help reduce the weed seed bank, increase herbicide diversity and fight resistance.
“A focus on stewardship today will lead to a strong, sustainable agriculture industry tomorrow.”
Q. Where can growers and resellers go for more information on Tavium?
Growers and resellers are always welcome to contact their Syngenta sales representative for more information. They also can visit the Tavium website, which features an online dicamba training presentation, additional information on dicamba stewardship requirements and best-management practices for fighting hard-to-control weeds.
*Heap, I. The International Survey of Herbicide Resistant Weeds. Online. Internet. Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2019. Available at www.weedscience.org.