that the herbicide label for dicamba beans was EPA approved a short time ago. You have also heard my opinion on this technology but I knew it was destined to arrive. Since registration has only been recently approved, there has not been a lot of time to review the label for application instructions and no doubt the label we see today will not be the one you need to read next season, but there are some initial points of interest you should be aware of.
Corn and Soybean Digest magazine (as well as others) recently published their own list of label considerations, which you can find here: http://cornandsoybeandigest.com/soybeans/12-considerations-make-when-it-comes-xtendimax-label, but I will just point out a few that I think deserve special mention.
- applications can be made through the R1 growth stage. For us that is when? About the beginning of July. I know that this product has been proposed for late season clean up - not going to happen.
- No tank mixes - with anything, even glyphosate. I'm not sure how this fits in with resistance management and using multiple modes of action. I won't be surprised to see this as one of the first label changes.
- You need to use a certain nozzle. This make sense as having good control over you droplet size is always important but no only is nozzle type specified, so is the brand. Curious? Bottom line is that even if you have nozzles that manage droplet size as needed but they are the wrong brand you will need new nozzles.
- Buffers between your field and adjacent areas. This is a fairly lengthy portion of the label, but knowing what the wind does to us during this time of year
- and, clean your sprayer after use, immediately. Do not allow the sprayer to sit with product in the lines.
As I previously mentioned, it is certain that this label will be amended before the next spray season and I know this winter it will be promoted as the savior of weed control. That is what bothers me. I know this technology is here, and we will soon see the 2,4-D version of it soon, I suppose, so my hope is that everyone will use these products wisely. The Liberty system has been doing well, but it is overused and this new technology is hitting the market when there is already resistance to it, as indicated in the ISU chart above, so if you do decide to try this product, here is my suggestion: use these products in rotation. If you use the dicamba product in beans then don't use any dicamba product in your corn this year or in next years corn. Switch to liberty on alternating years or every third year once the 2,4-D version is released. You cannot use the same technology all the time and if your seed adviser says you won't have any problems you need to do two things. First, think hard about whose interest he has in mind and, second, find a new seed adviser. I will publicly say it; it anyone tells you not to rotate to other technologies, they are a fool.
Well, I want to end this on a positive note. I have just read about a new breakthrough in the control of soybean cyst nematode. It sounds like researchers at Kansas State University have found a way to mess with the genetics of SCN when they feed on soybean roots. This will be a game changer if they can get this to work.