Layering Residual Herbicides

A single pre-emergence herbicide application in the spring to control challenging weeds like waterhemp can lose its effectiveness before the weeds hit their summertime peak. Splitting, or layering residual herbicides is a strategy that will extend the duration of weed control. For example, you could apply 60% of the labeled rate before planting, then put down the remaining 40% later on.

Mike Harper is the industry relations manager for FMC Corporation. He says the company works with growers on the need for a long-residual pre-herbicide to get a jumpstart on weeds.

"It’s applied by the grower in the spring and gives them that 30-days or more period of time that prevents weeds, especially tough control weeds like waterhemp from germinating through the soil, and then complimenting that with a planned post application approximately 25-days after planting," says Harper.

Whether it’s an older product or one of the new technology offerings for weed control, Harper says the base herbicide is the secret for a solid weed control program. 

"You got to remember, Mother Nature is pretty smart and their whole objective is survival," he says. "They’re constantly adapting and that’s why using multiple mode of action herbicides, overlapping residuals, all plays into that objective of counteracting how these weeds and insects are constantly evolving."

We’re in an era of new herbicides coming into the marketplace. Harper says by using a pre-herbicide, growers will extend the life and success of those new chemistries. 

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