NC State University graduate students win weed science awards

by Dee Shore, NC State University

Commonly referred to as pigweed, Palmer amaranth is one of the biggest production challenges farmers in the Southeast face. At NC State, scientists and graduate students are making progress toward lessening the weed’s impact in a range of crops.

Two of those students, Cole Smith and Nicholas Basinger, were recognized recently at the Weed Science Society of North Carolina for research they’ve conducted on Palmer amaranth and other destructive weeds. Smith won the society’s M.S. outstanding graduate student award, while Basinger won the Ph.D. student award. Continue reading

USDA responds to China’s new soybean import tariff

In 2016, Chinese officials put in place a new grain import law to keep invasive weeds and other plant pests from entering their country. Last fall, they informed USDA that U.S. grain shipments, particularly soybeans, did not comply with the new law. They specifically cited increased detections of weed seeds.

These weed seeds threaten U.S. access to China’s grain market. If we do nothing, the United States may lose this valuable market. Consider: Approximately 1 of every 3 bushels of U.S. soybean are shipped to China, making it the United States’ largest market for this commodity. In 2017, this export was valued at $12.4 billion, which is approximately 91% by value of all grains shipped to China. Continue reading

Pros and Cons of Cover Cropping for No-till Vegetable Production: Making sense of current research and past experiences

No-till vegetable production offers a more sustainable approach to weed management than the frequent use of herbicides and tillage, and also promotes soil health. Because cover crop based no-till vegetable production involves a different approach to management, growers may be reluctant to transition from conventional tillage without seeing the system in action and knowing its costs and benefits compared with conventional tillage. In this workshop Clemson University specialists will discuss the pros and cons of cover cropping and no-till with recommendations based on current research and our experiences in the field over the past decade.

May 17TH, 2018, 8:45 AM – 3:30 PM Continue reading

Fall Pest Management Seminar in Dallas

From Insects in the City

Registration is now open for the Fall Pest Management Seminar, sponsored by Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service. This is one of the most convenient and cost-effective ways to get your pesticide applicator CEUs in the Dallas area.  To register, go to our AgriLife Conference Registration site.  Early registration is still only $70, and includes lunch.

One big change this year is our location. This meeting, and all training meetings in the foreseeable future will be held at a new address, the Richardson Civic Center. It’s a very nice facility and no more hard yellow chairs!  We hope you’ll join us and check it out. Continue reading

Resistance management still important even with new herbicides

In Southeast Farm Press

by Brad Haire

Herbicide-resistant weeds didn’t fall from the sky or rise from fields in a mutant mutiny, but they are here nonetheless. With new herbicide technologies going mainstream this season, growers must continue dogged resistant-weed management programs to preserve viable chemistries for as long as possible.

“In general, herbicide-resistant weeds become a problem over time when they are selected to survive by the overuse of a single herbicide or single mode of action. In all weed populations, there are very low levels or frequencies of herbicide-resistant plants in comparison to susceptible plants,” said Eric Prostko, University of Georgia Extension weed specialist during an American Society of Agronomy webinar “Growing for Tomorrow: How Weed Resistance Management Can Lead to Sustainability” Feb. 1 sponsored by BASF. Continue reading

Education is vital to protect weed management toolbox

In Southeast Farm Press

by John Hart, Southeast Farm Press

Education over regulation is vital for developing and maintaining a sustainable tool box to manage weeds, said Stanley Culpepper, returning to Williams Hall on the campus of his alma mater, North Carolina State University.

“We as weed scientists need to be much more aggressive with education over regulation,” Culpepper said in his Williams Hall lecture to students, faculty and others. “The EPA does not educate; they regulate. But we can use education if we’re creative to prevent regulations. This will be critical to long-term sustainability in keeping the tool box that we have intact.” Continue reading

Statewide AgriLife Extension weed specialist retires after 27 years

by Kay Ledbetter, Texas A&M AgriLife

Weed problems in crops have been the focus of Dr. Paul Baumann for more than 27 years. But as of Aug. 31, he’ll be turning his interests to retirement.

Baumann, the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service state weed specialist in College Station, joined AgriLife Extension in 1989 and has devoted his career to addressing and solving weed management and environmental issues facing the agency’s stakeholders. Continue reading