Wheat growers in Ireland have the opportunity to make progress with their spring weed control earlier than usual after a mild winter left crops well advanced and the ground suitable for sprayers to travel.
Corteva Agriscience says conditions have conspired to allow crop protection products targeted at eliminating key problem weeds to be applied in the coming days and weeks, where active growth can be identified.
Liz Glynn, the company’s National Field Technical Manager, says a spring programme covering the full spectrum of key problem weeds will be crucial for many in Ireland given the lack of grassweed herbicides applied in the autumn.
“The spring is a very busy period for tillage farmers and contractors, and getting on top of weeds before they get too big or competitive with the crop is important,” Liz said.
“How soon growers can get sprayers working is down to soil conditions and the temperature, and this year is looking promising for those who want to get ahead.”
Wet weather set in during October and November, which called a halt on more winter crops being drilled. But the warmer temperatures that followed allowed those cereal fields which did get sown to establish well.
“Wet ground meant very few growers were able to apply herbicides targeted at controlling grassweeds,” Liz added. “This means weeds which established in the autumn will still be there this spring and need controlling.
“Although some crops have struggled to establish well in parts of the country, there are still plenty of good crops that need to be protected.”
Broadway® Star is a mainstay of spring weed control programmes and will be among the first products applied if an early opportunity to get sprayers working presents itself in February and March.
It gives excellent control of brome species, ryegrass, wild oats and a range of broad-leaved weeds in winter wheat and also has approval for use in spring wheat.
“Growers should look to apply Broadway Star as soon as conditions allow, to prevent problems later in the season,” Liz said.
“For best results it should always be applied with an approved adjuvant to small actively growing grassweeds.”
Early applications for sterile brome control will benefit from tank mixing with pendimethalin to provide some residual control where there is potential for further germination.
Broadway Star also controls a range of difficult broad-leaved weeds, including cleavers, charlock and cranesbill, so there is usually no need for a broad-leaved weed follow up spray.
The product label specifies a maximum rate of 265g/ha and a single application per crop. It can be used on crops between growth stages 11-32 inclusive.
Liz Glynn - National Field Technical Manager Ireland
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