The pickups lined up outside a farm building, so many in fact that a casual observer might have felt a new dealership was opening. Yet inside, the retailers attending the BASF Innovation Tour were learning plenty about new tools they’ll have for 2017 to control glyphosate resistant weeds while maintaining top flexibility in their weed control program.Mark Storr, technical service representative, started off the BASF Innovation Tour in Story City, Iowa, with a look at some bad corn roots. The message: More has to go right than genetics and crop protection to get yield.
Yet to start off the event Mark Storr, technical service representative, BASF, showed a corn root that even to the untrained eye just didn’t look right. “This was a field that was planted in April, then rain hit and they couldn’t get back in until May to finish planting after the heavy rain,” Storr says. “The result is sidewall compaction, that’s why these roots look like they do.”
This object lesson shows that a lot has to go right in a corn or soybean field to achieve the yields farmers need these days. During a BASF Innovation Tour event at the facility, 60 event attendees got plenty of information about herbicide use, timing and more to control tough weeds.
Here are some takeaways from the tour:
1. New tools work with well-known legacy tech. Dicamba technology has been around since 1958, and each successful innovation from BASF of this active ingredient has brought a significant drop in volatility.
2. An understanding of off-target issues. Volatility isn’t the number-one cause of crop damage with dicamba application. Storr attributes crop damage more to application drift, not volatility. The BASF On Target Application Academy, an educational resource available to growers, teaches application best practices to help mitigate spray drift.Marty Schmidt, red shirt, right, brought tour attendees right into the soybeans to see the effectiveness of a two-pass system in getting to all types of weeds in a soybean test plot. Schmidt is a BASF sales representative for the region.
3. A new preemerge player coming to market. Zidua® PRO herbicide brings a potent premix to the market with a preplant and preemergence approach that will get soybeans off to a strong start, and control weeds longer — offering farmers flexibility in application.
4. Future dicamba formulations will help control tough weeds. Continued developments in herbicide technologies, like new dicamba formulations, will help farmers build their own, highly targeted effective weed control programs containing multiple sites of action. BASF is developing Engenia™ herbicide, its latest formulation of dicamba for use with dicamba-tolerant cropping systems. Engenia herbicide, currently pending U.S. EPA registration, would add another site of action post-emergence to a portfolio approach to resistant weed control in dicamba-tolerant soybeans and cotton.After approval from the U.S. EPA, this two-pass system that includes Zidua PRO herbicide and Engenia herbicide offers five sites of action to keep herbicide resistant weeds under control, and stewards current technologies.
5. One-pass systems are not the way to go. A post-only, one-pass system will not work to preserve crop protection technology for the future, nor provide acceptable levels of weed control. “That’s not how we’re going with herbicide programs,” says Storr. “We want to steward new technology and control weeds using multiple sites of action.”
6. Two-pass programs deliver more. The two-pass weed control approach is the most effective way to go for producers, with a solid preemergence application followed by a diverse postemergence application.
First pass — Zidua® PRO herbicide — a new premix that offers burndown and residual preplant and preemerge premix. Zidua PRO herbicide is a three-way package of sites of action that controls a wide range of grasses and broadleaf weeds to get you started for the year.
Second pass — A portfolio approach with multiple distinct sites of action — One possible option for after a U.S. EPA registration of Engenia herbicide would contain Engenia herbicide, Outlook® herbicide and glyphosate. This combination will offer three separate sites of action in a postemergence pass that can knock down most weeds.
7. The importance of new-tech product labels. As new technologies enter the market, it’s especially important to learn all about the product before using it on your operation. Product labels are detailed documents that provide important information regarding proper use and should be an applicator’s first resource. “We do extensive testing with new products to determine how they best work in the field, which factors into label development,” Storr says.
8. The right nozzle for effective applications. Different nozzles are needed for different products. BASF recommends using the TeeJet® TTI nozzle with new dicamba technologies when permitted by the product label. “This is the nozzle type that we’ve found produces the extremely coarse to ultra-coarse droplet size we feel offers optimum drift reduction,” Storr says.
Direct injection systems and managing new tech
One hot item of discussion during the field day was the management of new crop protection technologies with a direct injection system — which will be an option in the future for applications of Engenia herbicide.
“With a direct injection system, you can add flexibility to your herbicide applications and switch on and off chemicals in your tank mix at your command,” says Gary Schmitz, Midwest technical service manager. “And with an injection system, you have easier cleanout of your sprayer too.”
The system simply injects the key herbicide into the spray manifold and through the nozzles without product ever entering the main spray tank. As Schmitz says, when it’s time for cleanout, you won’t have to worry about the main tank, just cleaning the hoses and nozzles, which is an easier task.
Since direct injection systems keep chemicals separate, they offer a valuable way to promote application stewardship and on-target product application by eliminating the risk of cross-contamination in the main tank. A direct injection system provides a key option for your farm.
Gary Schmitz, Midwest technical service manager, discusses the value of using a direct injection system to manage new crop protection technologies.
Engenia herbicide is not registered and not available for sale. The educational material provided is for informational purposes only and is not intended to promote the sale of the product. Any sale of this product after registration is obtained shall be solely on the basis of the EPA approved product label, and any claims regarding product safety and efficacy shall be addressed solely by the label.
Always read and follow label directions.
Engenia is a trademark of BASF. Outlook and Zidua are registered trademarks of BASF. TeeJet is a registered trademark of TeeJet Technologies.
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