Weed Specialists Discuss Kochia Control

By Trish Svoboda

Kochia, an annual weed, disrupts crop production and requires early herbicide treatment. Weed scientist Jeremie Kouame advises finalizing kochia control plans for the growing season.

“In western Kansas, kochia emerges very early.” Kouame said. “In February, for example, it started emerging, and so those first flushes of weeds are going to use the moisture of the soil, which can be detrimental to crops.”

He recommends a mix of pre-emergence pesticides, such as dicamba and atrazine, to control initial growth. Yearly treatment is necessary, especially if previous control was inadequate. Constant field monitoring is crucial for early detection.

Sarah Lancaster, a weed specialist, emphasizes the importance of field visits and warns about herbicide-resistant kochia. A recent study showed a 99% control rate of glyphosate-resistant Kochia in corn using a specific herbicide program. The herbicide program used in the study utilized Degree Xtra followed by Impact, Verdict followed by Status, and Balance Flexx followed by Laudis plus AAtrex.

Lancaster suggests using Verdict, for kochia in sorghum fields.

“Verdict is a combination of dimethenamid-p and saflufenacil. So, as we think about programs ahead of grain sorghum, Verdict can really play an important role there because it’s going to give us some residual activity, as well as some burndown activity on both kochia and pigweeds,” she said.

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