NovaChem > Industry News > 2020 > Help farmers ringfence drought impact with timely weed control

Help farmers ringfence drought impact with timely weed control

Published on 23/04/2020

"As soon as we get a little bit of rain, any of those pastures which have opened up over summer, with little to no plant cover, wil lhave weeds germinating flat out," says Glen Surgenor, marketing manager for Corteva Agriscience.

Left unchecked, they will prolong the loss of feed production that farmers have already experienced, and some of them will also do their best to leave a lasting legacy. Surgenor says there are two compelling reasons for encouraging farmers to tackle this sooner rather than later.

"In the short-term, obviously, the focus for a lot of customers this autumn is going to be the need to get paddocks growing good grass again as soon as conditions permit. Effective, timely weed control is a key part of that recovery process."

Just as importantly, the right herbicide programme now also helps keep a lid on weedseed burdens, he says. If weeds have a chance to flower and set seed before winter, thin, damaged paddocks will come under even greater pressure in spring, when most farmers need as much grass as they can get, are flat out with other jobs and don’t need the hassle of extra spraying.

"In some regions, the dry is quite advanced – Northland and the east coast, for example, are not looking flash after those extreme heat days. The extended forecast doesn’t look very promising either, so the situation could get worse before it gets better." 

Retailers have a range of options available to help both dairy and red meat customers get on top of the problem, he says. 

Tordon PastureBoss has a good fit in this scenario, depending on how much clover is left in paddocks damaged by the dry.

It covers such a wide spectrum of weeds; it can be used in a range of temperatures, and it’s been proven over a decade of use to provide reliable, consistent results in these sorts of conditions."

Case in point? California thistles, which have proliferated during the dry and will come back bigger and badder than ever in spring without a knock-back now. 

Select can also be used for controlling Calis, as part of a multi-season approach. Both Select and Preside are best where seedling weeds are the target, and where farmers want to look after any clover plants remaining after the dry. Most farmers will have a range of different weed species affecting their pastures, so if retailers have any questions about which herbicides might be best for particular situations, Corteva Agriscience field staff are only too happy to help, Glen says.

"The key takeaway is that, regardless of which specific weeds are problematic, taking action now to get on top of them will pay dividends down the track, and help keep the effects of the dry from cutting into next season’s production."

For more detail contact your local Corteva Agriscience territory sales manager

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