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Strategies for Improved Weed Management on Small – Scale Diverse Farms

Avoiding Weed Seed Set

The most effective way to minimize weed pressure is to never let a weed set seed in the production system, where it will add to the weed seed bank and compete directly with your crops once conditions are right for germination.

For this reason, it is critical to reduce the seed bank as much as possible, both prior to planting out your crops in order to start the season with a “clean slate,” as well as following harvest. This can be especially challenging for small-scale producers in highly diverse cropping systems—particularly growers with limited access to effective tractor-mounted implements for tillage, bed forming, planting, and follow-up cultivation.

Commonly, a few “escaped” weeds that have grown alongside your crop will continue to mature and set seeds after the crop has been harvested and prior to crop mow-down and tillage. In diverse systems this is particularly problematic because crops of various maturation windows are often sown in blocks, making it difficult to get in and till two lines of a quick-maturing crop that is directly adjacent to a crop with a longer maturation rate.

For this reason, it is essential to plan production blocks that are as uniformly matched, in terms of maturation, as possible. If different maturation times within a block are unavoidable, then it is especially important to use set row configurations that match your implement selection to allow for post-harvest mowing and tilling of specific crop rows within a production block in order to minimize weed set following harvest.know more here y2mate com game download

Lastly

Tools that facilitate the knock-down of specific rows within a block include the flail mower, the under-cutter, and either a bed recycling disc or a rototiller. All of these tools need to be closely matched to your bed configuration to minimize damage to adjacent crops and to effectively destroy escaped weeds

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