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Keep Weed Seed Out of Your Harvest

August 8, 2019
This agronomic image shows corn and soybean fields

Get every bushel out of your acres by reducing weed seed at harvest.

Keeping your corn and soybean fields free of unwanted weed seed is an important task, as seeds in your harvest can lead to dockage at elevators. You’ve worked hard this season to keep your fields free of unwanted weeds, especially during a year where weed escapes might be more prevalent because of weather challenges. To get every possible bushel out of your acres, you’ll need to be extra vigilant about what goes into the combine this season.

If you do see weeds in your fields at harvest, consider some of these harvesting tips outlined by the United States Department of Agriculture:

  • Avoid harvesting crops that are located in areas that are densely populated with weeds – the risk of spreading weed seed is likely not worth the bushels you might get from that area of the field.
  • Adjust your combine’s cutting height settings to minimize the amount of weed seed that is harvested. Consulting your combine provider will help determine the right height for your field conditions.
  • Regularly clean your farm equipment between harvesting different fields to avoid contamination from weed seed.
  • Destroy all weed seed that is left in the field after harvest to prevent it from entering the soil seed bank. Burning weed seed is a common way to get rid of it.

Before taking your crops to the elevator, consider these additional precautions:

  • Examine corn and soybeans for weed seed upon arrival.
  • Separate weed seed from corn and soybeans through mechanical cleaning or other means.

Weed scientists are recommending a zero tolerance for weed escapes. Ridding fields of weed presence not only benefits your yield potential, but also lowers the chance of future seeds getting added to the seed bank. Incorporating a burndown harvest aid like Gramoxone® SL 2.0 herbicide helps target difficult-to-control weeds and keeps the combine running smoothly.

Taking these preventive actions to minimize contamination from weed seed will help ensure the hard work you’ve put into this season pays off, and will help prevent weeds from growing on your farm in the future.

To learn more about managing weeds while preventing resistance development, visit ResistanceFighter.com.

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