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Labor Day, College Football, and Reflection on Weed Management in 2019 (08/29/19)

I think of the start to the college football season when I am reminded of Labor Day. It is also the time of the year when many growers are beginning preparation for fall row crop harvest.

I think of the start to the college football season when I am reminded of Labor Day. It is also the time of the year when many growers are beginning preparation for fall row crop harvest. But wait, we have not finished collecting 2019 field season data. I am writing to remind you to take weed species and density notes and, if possible, maps spatially representing where you observed tough weeds in fields in 2019. These data must be collected ahead of harvest since the combine will eliminate all evidence of 2019 weeds or any other 2019 mistakes.

These data compliment pesticide application records and are critical as growers continue to develop their management strategy for each field in the farming operation. Use your field scouting notes, maps, and your 2020 cropping plans to develop a comprehensive weed management strategy after carefully considering the ‘biology’ of the ‘tough weeds’ challenging your fields. Continue to learn germination and emergence habits of weeds and timeline when each weed species may begin to germinate and its emergence in fields. And above all, study the various herbicide options in-crop, considering mode of action, application timing, and mixtures to augment control and learn of any potential herbicide rotational restrictions for future crops planted in the cropping sequence.

Unexpected weather will always provide a wrinkle to the weed management strategy so develop a backup plan if your strategy needs to be adjusted due to unforeseen circumstances. Finally, don’t be afraid to reevaluate the strategy and make changes to the weed management strategy based on mistakes or disappointing results. Remember that Einstein was the one who stated that anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new. Here is to a safe and productive 2019 row crops harvest and best wishes for 2020.

 

Tom Peters

Extension Sugarbeet Agronomist

NDSU & U of MN

This site is supported in part by the Crop Protection and Pest Management Program [grant no. 2017-70006-27144/accession 1013592] from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed are those of the website author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

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