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Tackle waterhemp upfront

Photo courtesy of Chad Smith Media

United States farmers and ranchers continue to struggle in their fight against waterhemp. A crop protection specialiast offer tips and tricks for succesfully managing this tough-to-control weed.

AUDIO: Travis Ralfs, Valent

“Waterhemp is not any easier to manage,” shares Travis Ralfs, territory manager with Valent. Ralfs suggests farmers apply herbicide residuals upfront, and “not just any residual.”

“The effective modes of action are going to be exceptional on waterhemp. In the past, we’ve tried to get by with some of our residuals,” Ralfs said. “We need to change our mentality and look at upfront residuals that are going to give us the biggest bang for our buck, that are not going to allow waterhemp to get out of the ground.”

Similar to other industry experts, Ralfs recommends overlapping residuals.

“Products such as Fierce MTZ overlapping with Warrant, from Bayer. Excellent, different modes of action that are going to be effective (and) truly hold waterhemp in place, which is what we’re after,” Ralfs said. “We do have trait packages that can (help) clean things up, but that’s a last resort effort. We want to be upfront and not have waterhemp come up, out of the ground.”

Valent praises Fierce MTZ, one of its newer products, for offering three effective modes of action for complete waterhemp control.

“The nice thing about Fierce MTZ is it’s an all-liquid formulation, so easy to mix. The best part about it is it has three effective modes of action on waterhemp – Valor, Zidua and Metribuzin,” Ralfs said. “There are plenty of products that have two effective modes of action, but this one has three effective modes of action for waterhemp. It’s broad spectrum for weeds we’re facing here in Iowa.”