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Crop Injury from Soil-Applied Herbicides (06/16/16)

I have observed more visual corn, soybean, and sugarbeet injury in my plots from soil-applied herbicides in 2016 than in previous years.

Crop Injury from Soil-Applied Herbicides

I have observed more visual corn, soybean, and sugarbeet injury in my plots from soil-applied herbicides in 2016 than in previous years. First instinct is this is an unusual observation considering how dry it has been in many parts of the area. However, there might be a plausible explanation. Many fields including my experiments were planted into dry soil and required precipitation to achieve stand. Precipitation also activated soil-applied herbicide. Thus, herbicides may have been in the seed layer as crop seeds imbibed water to initiate the germination process. Contrast this to most years when seed imbibition occurs immediately following planting and temporally before precipitation activates soil-applied herbicides.

Second, stands are uneven in 2016. It is not uncommon to see the crop at multiple growth stages in the same plot in my research. Thus, it has been a very difficult to properly time application of soil-applied herbicides applied early postemergence (lay-by). Variation in growth stage at application timing may partially explain crop injury.

Tom Peters

Extension Sugarbeet Agronomist

NDSU & U of MN

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