Agronomist: Resistant weeds a growing concern

Published online: Jun 06, 2013
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Although farmers in northwest Iowa may not be seeing the same levels of herbicide resistance as their counterparts to the south, they are aware of the problem and are starting to take steps to slow the development of resistance in their fields.

So says Joel DeJong, Iowa State University Extension agronomist in northwest Iowa.

"There's a very high percentage (of farmers) already that seem to think they're having more and more issues over the last decade with some herbicide resistance issues," says DeJong. "There's more and more concern about what they're doing in the future and many of them are thinking that they are going to have to make some fairly major changes over the next five to 10 years."

DeJong says "variety" is the key.

"We need to give variety to these weeds-and when we've got a lot of variety out there it's much tougher for those weeds to develop resistance," he says. "So we need to look at this as a long-term, big picture type of situation, rather than what we're going to do just for the next season.

"We need to look at the rotation. We need to look at the herbicide families we're looking at over multiple years. We need to make sure that we can keep throwing different things at those weeds to keep them in check."