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October 2009 Archive for Syngenta Field Report

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The Syngenta Field Report features information and experts from Syngenta sharing observations about issues growers are dealing with in the fields.

Italian ryegrass showing classic signs of resistance

Oct 30, 2009
Chuck Foresman
Glyphosate-resistant Italian ryegrass has been a problem in Mississippi for a couple of years. But in 2009, growers in other areas had more trouble with this tough weed.  One of my colleagues in western North Carolina shared these photos from a grower.
30 oz. of glyphosate                                   30 oz. of glyphosate and a 3x glyphosate application
Evidence you may be dealing with resistance is live weeds next to dead weeds of the same species. Other signs of weed resistance include effective control of other weed species on the herbicide label, but lack of effective control of a weed that was controlled in past years. Of course, you have to make sure that rate and timing of the herbicide application is right, and that weather and growing conditions were reasonably normal at application before you jump to conclusions.

Are you able to control Italian ryegrass effectively? Are their other weeds that glyphosate is not controlling well?

Knock out nematodes, protect yield

Oct 27, 2009
David Long 

This season, a series of large-block plots showcased the efficacy of the first nematicide/insecticide/fungicide corn seed treatment combination in real-world growing conditions across the country. The combination seed treatment will be widely available for 2010. Hundreds of side-by-side trials directly compared this new option to the industry standard insecticide/fungicide seed treatment. The trials were conducted in 23 states from North Dakota to Texas, and Pennsylvania to Georgia.

In many of these trials, the seed treatment containing the nematicide component had more vigorous corn plants, resulting in taller, larger corn with healthier and more extensive root systems, vs. the industry standard. As the photo from Dorchester, Iowa, shows, corn treated with the nematicide also had larger root systems and the ears were larger and more developed.

To learn more, visit the online tutorial.


Double dose of rootworm control

Oct 23, 2009
Caydee Savinelli

University entomologists observed lower root ratings from a combination of soil insecticide and Bt traits in plots with heavy rootworm pressure. Is this combination necessary? Two reasons to consider this strategy include:
  • Dissatisfaction with the level of protection from Bt corn hybrids
  • Problems with soil insects other than rootworm, like wireworms, white grubs, grape colaspsis, seed corn maggot, and others
Other entomologists say using two modes of action for rootworm control could play a role in resistance management, and combination treatments may offer longer-term benefits. 
How do you decide if you would benefit from a double dose of corn rootworm control? Consider the following questions:
  • Is there heavy rootworm pressure?
  • Do I need to manage insects with multiple modes of action?
  • Is there heavy white grub pressure?
  • Are past wireworm pressures a concern?
  • Is there potential for early-season weed competition? – (Pest population growth accelerates in early weed cover.)
  • Is there a history of grape colaspis?
  • Do I plan to plant early? (Low-dose RW-traits may not last long enough to protect against late-season feeding.)
  • Are cutworms a threat?
Answering “yes” to any of these questions indicates that you should seriously consider a combination of corn rootworm control to protect your crop.

When 2+2 adds up to more than 4

Oct 20, 2009
Gordon Vail
If you’ve taken an applicator test, you probably remember that 2+2 doesn’t always equal 4. Sometimes 2 quarts of one product plus 2 quarts of another may antagonize each other and give you only 3 quarts worth of activity on a weed. But more often, you likely choose products where 2 quarts of one and 2 quarts of another create 5 quarts worth of activity.
That synergy is what happens when you combine mesotrione and atrazine, two effective herbicide modes of action that have a unique synergy. The broadleaf control received from the combination is better than the control expected based on each herbicide applied alone. The picture shows a bare ground study in Missouri taken 40 days after treatment with a combination of mesotrione and atrazine, showing the strength of long-lasting residual broadleaf control from the combined herbicides.
In the field, this synergy provides better control of glyphosate-resistant or glyphosate-tolerant broadleaf weeds like lambsquarters, waterhemp, pigweed species and ragweed.

Nominate a Resistance Fighter of the Year

Oct 16, 2009
Chuck Foresman

More growers are starting to see glyphosate-resistant weeds in their own fields.  Many growers have made adjustments to their weed control programs to manage glyphosate-resistant weeds based on advice from a local expert.
We applaud those who are counseling growers to proactively implement sound resistance management practices, such as incorporating pre-emergence residuals or tank mixing at burndown, rotating crops and scouting their fields for glyphosate resistance. Those individuals inspired us to create the Resistance Fighter of the Year program.
The Resistance Fighter of the Year program recognizes those who serve as role models and provide growers with guidance they need to manage weeds successfully in their operations. For more information, visit  
Nominations are being accepted through Monday, November 30, 2009.   Eligible nominees include retailers, consultants and county extension agents who have successfully implemented resistance management practices with producers in their area.
Who has influenced weed management practices in your operation? Should they be considered for Resistance Fighter of the Year?

Get information on-the-go

Oct 13, 2009
We took FarmAssist Mobile, our mobile-friendly version of, on the road early this fall to get insight into what kind of information you want to be able to access on your data-ready cell phone or wireless internet device. And we found out that many of you like the idea of getting up-to-the-minute market reports, personalized weather forecasts (based on your zip code), streaming agronomic news and information for the crops you grow. 
For free. (Users may incur charges applied by their carrier for mobile data access.)

Are you interested? Simply type in ‘’ on your mobile device and follow the prompts. Once there, be sure to register your zip code for customized information. And then check it out whenever you want!

Could CRW develop resistance?

Oct 09, 2009
Caydee Savinelli

Many growers currently use corn hybrids stacked with Bt and glyphosate-tolerant traits to control corn rootworm and manage weeds. The volunteer corn that emerges the following year is considered a weed problem, but it may be a “safe haven” for corn rootworms.
The volunteer corn includes second-generation Bt, which equates to a lower dosage of the Bt gene – enough to stun, but not always eliminate the corn rootworm. Exposing the corn rootworm larvae present in the field to less-than toxic levels of Bt can decrease its susceptibility to the Bt trait. This could potentially foster development of harder-to-control corn rootworm.  

Check out some Syngenta solutions to manage this challenge.  How do you control volunteer corn? 


Corn rootworm feeding on volunteer corn roots

Would a fall herbicide application make sense?

Oct 06, 2009
Gordon Vail

While you are waiting to get into the fields or starting to harvest this fall, you can take time to start thinking ahead to next season. Although a cooler-than-average summer may have your crop behind, take a look at your fields. For example, if you had a field like this one, would you want to do something different next year?
Depending on harvest and frost timing, a fall herbicide application may be a good option to clean up unusually weed fields, especially perennials and herbicide-resistant weeds

Fall herbicide applications before corn help save time in the spring, reduce weed pressure, manage resistance and spread the workload, depending on the weather. Reducing the weed pressure this fall may also help a one-pass residual program work better in next season’s corn.

Augmenting reality

Oct 02, 2009
Anthony Transou

Have you seen what happens when real-world and computer-generated graphics are blended in real time? This technology, called augmented reality, provides a new level of user interaction. It’s actually pretty cool.
Syngenta used augmented reality at the 2009 Farm Progress Show last month to share challenges of glyphosate weed resistance. We created a game that uses a real fist to knockout computer-generated or virtual weeds in the field. “Whack-a-Weed” was a bit hit, and we plan to have the game travel to other major industry shows this winter.

If you were at Farm Progress Show, let us know what you thought of Whack-a-Weed. And if you weren’t in central Illinois in September, remember to look for Syngenta at national shows to see if you can (literally) beat resistant weeds.
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