Grab the last opportunity to get on top of broad leaved weeds in spring cereals, says Stuart Jackson, herbicide specialist at Dow AgroSciences, as spring-drilled crops across the UK grow away in the mild conditions.
Late lifting of sugar beet and potatoes plus the stop-start drilling of winter wheat last autumn has led to a reasonably large area of spring drilled cereals, including spring barley and oats.
Many broad-leaved weeds are able to germinate and grow rapidly in spring, therefore weed control needs to be completed as soon as possible in these crops, ideally before T1 timing. Reducing weed competition with the crop for water and nutrients is key, along with preventing large returns to the seed bank which will store-up problems for future crops.
“Focus on achieving robust control of the most competitive weeds: cleavers, chickweed, mayweed, poppy and brassicas, but don’t ignore other targets such as polygonums, hempnettle, deadnettle, speedwell and pansy,” says Mr Jackson.
“We advise using Spitfire (fluroxypyr + florasulam) or Galaxy or Dakota (fluroxypyr + florasulam + clopyralid) for effective control of a range of broad-leaved weeds, including those with confirmed resistance, such as chickweed, mayweed and poppy.
“The non-ALS elements, fluroxypyr (in Spitfire, Galaxy and Dakota) and clopyralid (in Galaxy and Dakota) provide control of resistant chickweed and mayweeds respectively, plus the clopyralid improves the activity on polygonums and thistles. The florasulam will provide control of resistant poppy.
“Mixing with CMPP, HBN or dicamba + mecoprop-P is recommended to increase control to the full broad-leaved weed spectrum.”