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Farm Basics #1002 Controlling Perennial Weeds with Herbicide (Air Date 6-18-17)

during our farm basics time today we're

going to talk about how to control a

perennial weed with herbicide here's one

of the big things I'd like to point out

is if you've got a perennial weeds so

often I talk to people that just throw

their hands up oh it's a perennial it's

got such an extensive root system I can

never really get rid of it and I say

well really what have you tried to do

well I've tried pulling it or I've tried

using a hole or I've tried doing tillage

and all those methods can work very

temporarily but the big thing about

perennials is you have to address that

root system underneath the ground once

you do that you can actually get rid of

many of the perennials well the other

thing too is not all root systems are

the same so for example Canada thistle

has rhizomes below the ground so in

other words it will spread far and wide

whereas dandelion has a pretty simple

root system but it's perennial it can go

very deep well those are two different

types of root systems but in either case

they're huge so a lot of times if you

pull the dandelion yep you've got that

bottom point that's way down on the

ground you didn't get it's going to put

another shoot out and dandelions coming

back with Canada thistle you say oh I'm

going to just go do tillage and chop it

all up okay well now you've cut those

rhizomes off now you might have 50

plants where before you just add one

great big plant this is a big problem so

the key here is we talk to people often

about if you want to kill a perennial

weed don't do tillage leave that root

system entirely intact so you can get

the herbicide all the way through the

plant I look at it like pipe work if you

disconnect some water pipes all of a

sudden you get water squirting out all

over but if you leave them all together

you can actually do something that

impacts the entire system the other

thing that I really look at with

perennial weeds is when is the best time

to get things done now some people will

say hey right now is a great time to get

things done because I can actually get

out there I'm done with my corn with my

soybeans whatever crop that I have to do

now I've got time to go after those

perennials in certain areas you can do

it right now but when you think about

what those roots are doing there

are storing up nutrients and water for

the plant now a lot of those stores are

moving up because the plants using them

in the fall of the year a lot of the

stores are going down

so the water and nutrients are getting

stored up for winter survival that's a

great time to stop these perennial weeds

you know I've heard that Darren for many

years and people talk about all kill the

stuff in the fall it's way better I

haven't found that in my experience you

can do a great job when the weed is

actively growing and that's the whole

key it depends on where you're at in the

country for example I look at winter

starting in about October whereas in

South they look at winter is starting

never or in December or January what I'm

getting at here is as soon as you get

cold temperatures you're not going to

move herbicide very well so we just want

to make sure that you have nice warm

temperatures if that happens to be

September if it happens to be August if

it happens to be May or June I'm fine

either way it's not that big a deal I

don't think it's going to make that much

difference the whole key for me is you

got to make sure you have a lethal dose

I think that's where most people go

wrong if they just don't spray a high

enough rate well so often we talk to

people whether it's on a radio show each

week or or as we see people out and

about and I say well I use this product

to try and stop the perennial weed but

it just didn't work for me how come it

works for you and it didn't work for me

yep and the whole key is rate now the

other thing about that is water very

often we find a non farmer will go to

the hardware store and buy a watered

down version of the herbicide okay so

that's the first problem and then they

put it with way too much water you want

to keep the water volume low have the

spray droplets concentrated use the

strongest label dose and you absolutely

can kill perennials as long as your

herbicide is systemic like roundup is

like tor Don is like stinger is there

are a lot of good products out there

depending on the perennial weed you've


so don't let perennial weeds go if

they're a problem get after them right

away you can get them under control

control that root system control that

plant with the strong dose well speaking

of perennial weeds we'll talk about a

perennial weed that may be a little out

of the ordinary that's coming up during

our wheat of the week time later in the