• Crop Protection
  • Mar 24, 2021

Navigate Dicamba Label Changes for In-Season Spray Success

Soybean Field

As farmers prep for another season with dicamba label changes, it’s a good time to review best spray practices to ensure in-season success. If you’re planning a dicamba application, there are a few requirements that could change how you manage your crop.

 

Dicamba label changes for 2021

Here’s a rundown of the major federal label changes for 2021.

 
  • June 30 application cutoff. The previous XtendiMax® herbicide with VaporGrip® Technology label restricted dicamba spray applications after the R1 growth stage or 45 days after planting soybeans, whichever came first. This year, farmers and applicators will have to follow those same restrictions with XtendiMax but must also complete all in-season applications in soybeans by June 30. The June 30 deadline applies to all in-season dicamba products, but there could be different growth stage requirements depending on the dicamba product. Also, be aware that some states may impose more restrictive application deadlines and requirements.

  • 240 feet of downwind buffer. This year farmers will need to plan for a minimum 240-foot downwind buffer for most fields they intend to spray. Previously, the buffer requirement was 110 feet for non-sensitive areas. For areas that include sensitive or endangered plant species, a 310-foot downwind and a 57-foot omnidirectional buffer are required.

  • Volatility-reduction agent (VRA) required. In addition to drift-reduction agent (DRA) requirements, applicators will need to include a VRA in the dicamba tank this season. VRAs are formulated to maintain the pH of the tank mix, which reduces the risk of the herbicide moving off-target through volatility.

 

Managing in-season dicamba applications

What do these changes mean for you? Mostly, that you need to have a solid plan heading into the season. While the June 30 application deadline may not affect situations where soybeans are timely planted, farmers who are faced with later planting dates or those who intend to plant double-crop soybeans should consider an alternate plan for weed control.

 

The additional downwind buffer could have a bigger impact, especially for smaller fields. You’ll need to weigh weed control options for buffer acres. In some cases it may make sense to choose a different trait platform altogether depending on the number of acres that are eligible for dicamba applications outside of those buffer areas.

 

Although the VRA requirement might be the easiest change to comply with, farmers and applicators should consult the label to ensure the product they plan to use is approved. Volt-Edge, a VaporGrip® Xtra agent, is an approved VRA formulated for in-season dicamba applications. It buffers the tank solution pH to help reduce free protons that can lead to volatility. Applicators are still required to use an approved DRA such as OnTarget® or Optify XX in the tank mix as well.

 

Don’t forget the basics

In addition to following the legal requirements, there are other steps farmers can take to ensure they get the most from dicamba applications. The best way to support successful in-season weed management is with a strong preemergence program with multiple modes of actions and residual control. Starting clean will give you more flexibility if weather or logistical challenges permit a timely postemergence herbicide application.

 

Finally, to get the most effective weed control, you need to ensure good coverage. One way to do that is with effective adjuvants. In addition to DRAs and VRAs to manage drift and volatility, a water conditioner that’s specifically formulated for dicamba, such as Class Act® Ridion®, can help reduce antagonism in the spray tank for improved herbicide efficacy. Ensuring that you have the right nozzles and adjuvants for the chemistry you plan to spray is also important, especially if you’re planning to spray multiple herbicides in-season.

 

With a favorable outlook for commodity prices in 2021, spending a few extra dollars to ensure clean fields can make a big difference on the bottom line at the end of the season. Your local WinField United retailer is available to support you as you refine this season’s soybean management strategy.

 
 

All photos are either the property of WinField United or used with permission.

 

Important: Before use always read and follow label instructions. Crop performance is dependent on several factors many of which are beyond the control of WinField United, including without limitation, soil type, pest pressures, agronomic practices, and weather conditions. Growers are encouraged to consider data from multiple locations, over multiple years, and be mindful of how such agronomic conditions could impact results.

 

© 2021 WinField United. Class Act®, OnTarget®, Optify, Ridion®, Volt-Edge and WinField® are trademarks of WinField United.

 

XtendiMax® herbicide with VaporGrip® technology is a trademark of Bayer.

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