Doctors don’t prescribe treatment without first diagnosing the ailment. Weed control should work the same way. Identify the weeds that torment your fields and map their locations to avoid blanket treatments that might not take care of the problem.
Keep this tool handy with your field guide while scouting next season. After you determine if you’re facing a broadleaf or grass-like weed, work through the numerous leaf, stem, root and flower characteristics to determine which weed you’re up against. Once you know, you can decide how you want to treat the problem.
This story is part of a series on herbicide resistance, which puts many farmers in a billion dollar bind. The next two installments look at the five worst weeds and weed control best practices.