In today’s Almond Matters, brought to you by Valent, growers are working on making all the necessary 2021 crop preparations. Taking appropriate action early in the season can mitigate the amount of work that will be required later down the line. One of the most important aspects to focus on during this time is getting preemergence materials down. Field Market Development Specialist for Valent USA, Todd Burkdoll says that starting clean and staying clean is the best strategy.
“Some of the stuff that I see coming up already is sowthistle and prickly lettuce along with fleabane and marestail. Seedlings are starting to pop,” Burkdoll noted. “Just yesterday I was out walking around, and I saw a couple different fields where weed pressure was pretty high.”
Paying close attention to the weather will also be an important factor when making 2021 crop preparations. Burkdoll suggests making a preemergent application anytime between now and about the middle of December. Growers will want to make their applications at a time when rain is expected in the forecast.
“It’s always easier to get your pre-emergents on clean soil because basically, you’re putting down a chemical barrier, a chemical blanket,” said Burkdoll. “Getting those products down now and into the soil, getting that barrier established is key to keeping clean throughout the winter. The problem is, is the rainfall. You need rainfall to activate almost all of these herbicides.”
Sometimes rainfall won’t always come when it is needed. In dry years growers have used their irrigation systems to help ensure the efficacy of preemergent products. The type of irrigation system will dictate whether that will be a viable option for growers. “Drip system doesn’t work so well, but with micro-sprinklers, you can at least get the pattern of the sprinkler system to incorporate into the soil,” Burkdoll explained.
Listen to the report below.