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Wheat growers: Prevent weed seed bank build-up

April 19, 2016

We’ve said before that it’s critical to take a proactive approach to combat weeds, protect yields and fight herbicide resistance. It’s especially important to manage weeds to prevent seed bank build up.

Weeds are often prolific seed producers, meaning that when weeds emerge and mature, they can develop and contribute seeds back into the soil, creating a large seed bank. Depending on the weed species, seeds may be viable for many years and can emerge when least expected. In terms of herbicide resistance, these are the seeds that are capable of building a resistant population.

Limiting resistance starts with anticipating and recognizing the issue in the field by evaluating the plants that survive a herbicide application, and then managing those weed escapes to prevent an increase in next year’s weed seed bank. Take these steps to limit weed production:

  • Scout fields early and often to manage weed escapes
  • Identify weeds properly and select a product that addresses the weed spectrum
  • Clean equipment and machinery
  • Alternate tillage practices
  • Don’t allow weeds to reproduce
  • Apply an effective burndown herbicide like Gramoxone® SL 2.0

As the season progresses and crops mature, growers may begin to let their guard down. However, managing the seed bank is a year-round activity. Throughout the season, diligent record keeping, scouting fields, implementing agronomic practices and applying effective herbicides can all help grow more wheat.

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Photos are either the property of Syngenta or used under agreement.

©2016 Syngenta. Important: Always read and follow label instructions. Some products may not be registered for sale or use in all states or counties. Please check with your local extension service to ensure registration status. Gramoxone SL 2.0 is a Restricted Use Pesticide. Gramoxone® is a registered trademark of a Syngenta Group Company.

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