With historic flooding this spring and early summer in the Midwest, fields could be in for new and concerning weed pressures, including the emergence of marestail. Flood waters and high winds have carried the seeds of marestail miles away, where they germinate in the heavy moisture. What makes it difficult to control is the timing of said germination.

In a recent Farm Progress article, Amit Jhala, Nebraska Extension weed management specialist, shared how the floods have created a perfect storm for marestail germination.

“A new population of marestail can emerge nine out of 12 months of the year. It’s not just a winter annual, but also a summer annual,” Jhala says.

Marestail is a noxious and notoriously difficult weed to control. The time of emergence and size of the weed play a major factor in getting control. Marestail can even survive winters and emerge in the spring.

If the pre-plant burndown was missed or ineffective, there are options, but getting ahead of the problem should be the first plan of attack. Dicamba is an effective option post-emergence on dicamba-resistant soybeans and corn.

Jhala also says PPO inhibitors can be used as an earlier post-emergence application when marestail is less than 6 inches tall, and glufosinate can be applied in glufosinate-tolerant soybeans or corn where marestail is less than 4 inches tall.


Nufarm solutions for marestail

Nufarm offers several strong options for control of marestail after flooding accelerates weed populations.

Panther® SC is a liquid flumioxazin PPO inhibitor from Nufarm that provides excellent residual control of tough broadleaf weeds like marestail.

Cheetah® glufosinate delivers fast, effective control of marestail as well as a variety of other grass and broadleaf weeds. It provides an excellent alternative to glyphosate and is a grower’s most reliable solution for managing existing or emerging herbicide resistance issues.