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Pre-emergent Weed Control
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Pre-emergent Weed Control
Preventive strategy is critical to bottom line

By Carroll Smith
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As rice producers begin thinking of their next planting cycle, weed control strategies should be front and center in their planning. Input costs of pre-emergent weed applications weighed against multiple applications post-emergence and possible yield loss from weed pressure, make a preventive control plan not just sensible but critical to their bottom line.

Permit is a trusted rice herbicide, which is effective on a broad spectrum of common weeds including tough-to-control weeds such as nutsedge, hemp sesbania, jointvetch and eclipta. Recently, consultants and growers have found that Permit is not only an effective post-emergent herbicide, but has residual characteristics that make a sound choice to support a pre-emerge program in rice.

“You can use Permit as a pre-emergent or burndown application prior to planting,” says B. D. Fontenot, a crop consultant with CPS in Elton, La. “It has a broad spectrum of weed control in addition to the nutsedge control.”

Tankmix Partner With Other Herbicides

To head off a variety of weeds, producers may also choose to tankmix Permit with other weed control products.

“It is very compatible with other herbicides,” Fontenot adds.

Application Methods And Timing

Permit is flexible so it can be used until permanent flood is established on rice and up to 48 days prior to harvest.

Permit’s typical use rate is two-thirds ounce to one ounce, not to exceed 1.3 ounces per season.

Brad Koen is a rice specialist with Arkansas crop consulting firm Southern Agronomic Resources LLC. He says Permit’s optimum application method depends on when you put it down.

“If we’re using it as a pre-emergent, we lay it down by air and ground rig,” he says. “Post-emergent, you’d want to use an airplane.”

Planning adequate inputs for maximum yield is always a challenge, but Koen said using Permit for weed control across the growing cycle is always a safe bet.

“The thing about Permit that stands out to me as a consultant is that, out of all the chemicals I put out, I feel more confident with Permit than any chemical we deal with in terms of dependability, flexibility and results,” he says.

“Anytime you can control weeds, you improve yield,” Koen explains. “If it wasn’t a yield improver, we wouldn’t use it. Having a clean crop at or below weed control budget levels is our goal, and when we have a product as dependable and affordable as Permit, it helps us meet that goal.”

Results from in-field trials show that, when mixed with Command and Roundup, Permit significantly reduces emergence of yellow nutsedge, morningglory, coffeebean, smartweed and common dayflower by up to 94 percent over Command and Roundup alone. Control of barnyardgrass, yellow nutsedge and coffeebean were controlled up to 92 percent more effectively when Permit was added to Command and Roundup WeatherMax than without it. Another important finding: Permit, used pre-emergent controlled target weeds thus maximizing yield potential in areas of high weed pressure at LSU AgCenter trials.

Weeds that emerge at the same time as the crop have been shown to cause more yield loss than weeds that emerge after the crop is established. That competition directly impacts producers’ bottom lines – currently, agricultural producers in the United States spend more than $3 billion each year on weed control at the farm level. By eliminating weed competition early, producers optimize yield potential and quality.

Permit’s application window is broad, making it even more flexible in the field. Producers who use it as a pre-emergent get more than early season control of many broadleaf weeds – it also buys a grower additional time in making post applications.

“This herbicide has post-emergent activity on some emerged weeds, but it also stops emergence on some other weeds after you plant,” Fontenot says. “It’s proven effective as a pre-emergent, but it’s often used as a post-emergent to clean up the field and effectively control escapes. Even so, it’s easy on the crop with very little phototoxicity after application.”

Information for this article was provided by Gowan Company.

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