Start Clean. Stay Clean.

Apr 25, 2022

Pre-emerge herbicides protect yields and keep weeds under control
“We continue to preach really hard about the importance of a good pre-emerge program, and that’s what it’s all about,” said Kevin Carlson, Federated’s agronomy sales manager. “It’s all about protecting the yield potential.”
Starting clean means using a good pre-emerge herbicide. “A good pre-emerge program is the foundation to making everything work right,” said Carlson.
Weeds compete for the light, nutrients, and water the crop needs, so “if you never give the weeds a chance, they aren’t going to compete with the crop.”
Of course, it’s all about timing, and in a year like this one, when the window for planting may be tight, you may ask, “Can I get everything done?”
Yes, you can, but it will take planning – and communication (see related article).
Soybean pre-emerge herbicides, for the most part, need to be applied within 3-4 days of planting to avoid plant injury, so communicating your custom spraying needs is critical.
“If you’re going to have Federated spray it, order the spray work as you are out planting,” said Carlson. “The sooner the order gets called in, the sooner it will get sprayed.”
It’s not much different for corn, though the corn can be up when the pre-emerge herbicides are applied. “We can keep spraying safely [a little later], but we want to get to that corn soon,” he said.
“We don’t want weeds consuming the very, very expensive nutrients that were applied to the corn,” he emphasized. Nutrients are at all-time highs.
Once you start clean with pre-emerge applications, you can stay clean with good post-emerge herbicides. Watch for future Agronomy Update articles on post-emerge options and talk to your Federated Agronomist with any questions as the season prepares to break loose!

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