Site-specific weed management can include both limiting herbicide application to areas of the field where weed pressure is above the economic threshold (patch spraying) and varying the choice of herbicide for most cost-effective weed control of local populations. The benefits of patch spraying with several, postemergence herbicides in irrigated corn were evaluated in simulation studies using weed counts from 16 fields. Patch spraying with one, two or the number of herbicides that maximized net return for a field was simulated. With patch spraying of one herbicide, the average area of a field left untreated is 34.5%. Net return increases by $3.09 ha−1 compared to a uniform application without decreasing crop yield. Additional herbicides increase the average benefits with just 4% more of the field treated. With two herbicides, the increase in net return is almost tripled and herbicide use is reduced nearly 10-fold compared to patch spraying with one herbicide, and weed control is better than the uniform application in 10 fields. Using more than two herbicides for patch spraying further reduces weed escapes, but herbicide use is greater than a uniform application in 10 fields. Growers might be more willing to adopt patch spraying if more than one herbicide is used in a field.
Precision Agriculture – Springer Journals
Published: Dec 6, 2008
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