Tip •  2023-08-29

Five things to look for when evaluating weed control results

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Palmer Amaranth in mature soybean field

Fall is the ideal time to assess your weed control results. Evaluating, making records of observations and consulting with your trusted crop advisor can help drive your approach to next year’s weed management strategy and make crop planning decisions easier and more effective. 

Here’s a list of five things to look for as you evaluate your 2023 weed control results.

  1. Escapes – weeds or crop volunteers
  2. Patterns – consistent weed escapes, problem areas or specific weeds
  3. Patches – clusters of specific or multi-weed species
  4. Anything unusual – new or uncommon weeds
  5. Look-alikes – carefully identify problem weeds

One of the best places to take stock of your weed management is from the seat of a combine. This view can make spotting problem areas easier. Look for weed escapes, patterns, and patches. Taking photos as you identify concerns can be an easy way to document your observations. Watching for weeds as the combine head moves through field is another opportunity to evaluate your weed control results. Pay close attention to anything that appears unusual and make a note of it for future evaluation.

No matter the season, scouting for weeds also requires walking your fields. Make the time to take a pre-harvest tour to evaluate issues and document results. Again, taking photos can be helpful. Drones can also be a useful tool for this task, offering another way to document observations, and save a few steps.

If you encounter a concern, be sure to carefully identify the weed. Some weed species, like pigweed and waterhemp can look similar. When in doubt, collect samples, take photos and consult with your trusted crop advisor or local Corteva Agriscience™ Territory Manager.

Making the time to evaluate weed control results is a key crop management tool. Not only can it uncover issues, but the process offers an opportunity to learn from the products applied, seed planted, tillage and agronomic practices. Taking the time to scout is just the first step, documenting observations by taking notes and photos and addressing questions or concerns with a trusted advisor is just as important. Every field is different, and the insights gained can help inform management decisions for next year’s crop, like what’s working, what needs to be changed and where improvements can be made.