Spray early for op­ti­mum weed con­trol

Tim­ing of pre-emer­gence and post-emer­gence her­bi­cide ap­pli­ca­tion needs to be pre­cise to get the best re­sults, writes Cia­ran Collins

Irish Independent - Farming - - FEATURE -

PRE-EMER­GENCE and early poste­mer­gence her­bi­cide ap­pli­ca­tions in wheat and bar­ley will give the best weed con­trol this au­tumn.

In the past, iso­pro­turon (IPU) of­fered farm­ers a de­gree of flex­i­bil­ity in the tim­ing of her­bi­cide ap­pli­ca­tions, but since its use was pro­hib­ited in Septem­ber 2017, farm­ers need to be more pre­cise with her­bi­cide ap­pli­ca­tions to get sat­is­fac­tory weed con­trol.

This is par­tic­u­larly rel­e­vant for the con­trol of an­nual meadow grass (AMG) in win­ter bar­ley where pre-emer­gence or early post-emer­gence tim­ings are re­quired to achieve the most re­li­able con­trol.

KNOW YOUR TAR­GET

Knowl­edge of the weeds that are most likely to oc­cur in a field is key to her­bi­cide se­lec­tion and tim­ing of ap­pli­ca­tion. Good records from pre­vi­ous sea­sons are an im­por­tant com­po­nent of any weed con­trol strat­egy.

Weeds have dif­fer­ent com­pe­ti­tion pat­terns so pri­or­ity will need to be given to weeds that will im­pact great­est on yield. The ta­ble ( right) out­lines the rel­a­tive com­pet­i­tive­ness of weeds in win­ter wheat and demon­strates how a se­verely com­pet­i­tive weed like cleavers would take pri­or­ity in a her­bi­cide pro­gramme over a mod-

Weeds have dif­fer­ent com­pe­ti­tion pat­terns so pri­ori­tise ones with the great­est im­pact on yields

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