Between this year's harvest and next spring's planting, winter annual weeds can take over fields. A fall burndown application can knock down weeds and set up growers for a strong 2011 crop.
"Eliminating winter annuals with a fall burndown gives growers a clean field in the spring, providing them the opportunity to manage spring planting more effectively, control resistant weeds and maximize their yield potential," says Dan Westberg, Technical Market Manager for BASF.
According to the University of Illinois Extension, dense populations of winter annuals can physically interfere with planting and may reduce soil drying and warming, which can delay planting and limit the time available for spring field operations. Westberg says eliminating winter annual weeds provides growers the opportunity for an earlier planting date, which gives crops more time to maximize their yield potential.
Completing fieldwork in the fall, such as combining a weed burndown and fertilizer application, also helps growers spread out their workload and manage planting with greater flexibility in the spring. A cleaner field allows soils to warm up more quickly in the spring and limits fertilizer loss to winter annual weeds. This gives growers the potential to plant earlier, protect fertilizer investments and gain yield benefits, in addition to providing much-needed flexibility and time during the busy planting season.
"A fall burndown application is an excellent resistance management tool because it gives growers another opportunity to bring a different mode of action to bear on their weed populations," Westberg adds.