4 Questions to Ask Before Choosing Your Corn Herbicides

Something went wrong. Please try again later...
Corn herbicides corn field

With so many corn herbicides on the market, choosing the right products for your operation may seem like a daunting task. That’s especially true when using ineffective herbicides leads to uncontrolled weeds competing with your corn for moisture, light, nutrients and space.  

Joe Armstrong, the zonal biology leader for row crop herbicides at Corteva Agriscience, says there are several factors growers should consider before selecting a herbicide for their cornfields this year. Optimum weed control, especially when targeting herbicide-resistant weeds, requires you to understand, select and rotate the right herbicide sites of action. 

Ask yourself the following four questions to help determine the type of product that will work best for your operation.  

  1. What does your field history look like?  
    Armstrong says field history is the most important factor when it comes to deciding on a herbicide program. The field history includes knowing which types of weeds are present in the field, which herbicides and modes of action have been used in the past, and if there have been any recent issues with poor weed control or signs of resistance.  
  2. Which weeds are in your fields and are any of those weeds resistant to certain modes of action? 
    “Growers should have a good idea of the specific weeds they have in each field and if any of those weeds are resistant to particular modes of action,” Armstrong says. 

    Using solutions with multiple modes of action and implementing other cultural weed control practices can help manage or prevent resistance in your cornfields. This is a much more effective strategy than repeatedly applying the same modes of action. 
  3. When is your preferred application timing?  
    It’s a good idea to know when you’d like to apply your herbicides, because application timing can limit which herbicides will work most effectively.  

    All too often, the application timing comes down to weather conditions. To combat this issue, choose a flexible product that allows for both pre- and post-applications.  
  4. What is your budget for weed control this year?  

    Investment for weed control depends on the cost of production across all inputs and your expected revenue on the acre.  

    “In higher-yield situations, growers will often benefit from spending a little more on their weed control to minimize or eliminate the impact of weeds on yield and preserve every bushel they can,” Armstrong says. “If a grower can spend a little more to ensure effective weed control this year, that will be beneficial in future years by reducing the overall weed seedbank.”   

After answering these questions, you’ll have a better idea of what you’re looking for in a corn herbicide program. To help find the right preemergence and postemergence solutions for your fields in 2022, you can visit the corn herbicides portfolio website from Corteva Agriscience. 

You’ve Chosen a Corn Herbicide. Now What? 

Choosing an effective herbicide is an important decision that can have a big impact on corn yields in the coming season, yet it’s just as important to follow the label directions on your chosen corn herbicide.  

“Reading the product label can help you apply optimal use rates to maximize efficacy, decrease the risk of crop injury and minimize carryover to rotational crops,” Armstrong concludes.