MARION, Ind. — In Pioneer field agronomist Brian Schrader’s territory in east-central Indiana, ‘maters matter and Plenish is a priority.
“We are not very far from Red Gold and a lot of Red Gold tomatoes get grown in this part of the world. We also have a number of specialty crop programs for non-GMO soybeans, including Pioneer’s own Plenish high oleic soybeans,” Shrader said.
The fact that so many of their neighbors grow tomatoes and other specialty crops had farmers in his territory searching for alternatives to dicamba for effective weed control.
Finding a herbicide system that provided effective weed control against the region’s major weed headaches posed another challenge for growers.
“We have three major weeds that we fight and we just ran out of other options. Those three are waterhemp, marestail and giant ragweed. The majority of our marestail and the giant ragweed, specifically, got incredibly tolerant to glyphosate and we just weren’t able to get them under control,” Shrader said.
Enter Enlist. The system of traited soybeans and Enlist herbicide with the effective ingredient of 2,4-D choline has been adopted quickly by growers in this region, Shrader said.
“This is the third season I have had the Enlist system in my geography and we were 80% Enlist E3 soybeans in this geography. We adopted them incredibly fast,” he said.
Shrader said growers were especially sensitive themselves to neighbors with sensitive crops.
“Because of those other crops, farmers were uncomfortable spraying dicamba post-emerge and so we were running out of weed control options quickly. Enlist solved so many of those problems for growers that they have adopted the Enlist system, in this part of the world, in a very big way,” Shrader said.
It isn’t just that the Enlist system allows farmers to operate more confidently around fields of sensitive crops, the Enlist system has a list of other advantages that mean farmers can be more flexible.
“You’ve got near-zero volatility, and you have the reduced drift potential as well for the product. It’s easier to handle because of the tank-mix options. You get a wider window of application and the restrictions and conditions on when you can spray are much easier to deal with in the Enlist system than it is with dicamba. You don’t have the June 20 cutoff date in Indiana, so you have much more flexibility with situations you may run into in different areas,” Shrader said.
At the end of the day, yield is what matters and Shrader said Enlist has pleased growers in that category, as well.
“The Enlist E3 soybeans have great yield potential and we certainly have seen that already with those that have been harvested. Those varieties have been right there at the top of the yield reports we’re getting,” Shrader said.
This column was contributed by Indiana AgriNews for Pioneer.