Of course glyphosate is toxic! It is a herbicide after all – the whole point of glyphosate (G for short in this post) is to kill unwanted plants. Like all chemicals, including water and salt, G is going to be toxic to animals (including humans) at some dose. Compared to other herbicides, though, G is a pretty safe option for killing weeds. Don’t take my word for it, check out the Glyphosate Technical Fact Sheet from the National Pesticide Information Center at Oregon State. G’s relative safety is one reason why it’s become so popular.
One interesting use of G is to dry wheat before harvest. To help reduce levels of toxic fusarium fungus on wheat, it is good to harvest the wheat as early as possible but you can’t harvest it until it’s dry. So G is used to dry (aka kill) the wheat plants so the grain can be harvested. As long as the G is sprayed after the plants have fully matured, the G won’t be moved from the plant into the seeds. Here, G is actually helping farmers prevent a legitimately scary toxin from getting into the food supply. Want to learn more? Check out this video: Wheat School- Timing Pre Harvest Glyphosate Application In Wheat.
With G being used not only as a herbicide but also as a drying agent, and not just in our lawns but on our food, should we worry about our safety? In short, no.
You are invited to a seminar/field day to see the results of 3-herbicide tests involving Dismiss, Roundup and salt on goosegrass, crabgrass, postrate spurge, creeping indigo, dollarweed, horseweed, nutsedge, and purslane in a seashore paspalum lawn. Although the results were inconsistent, you may still find the information useful and interesting.
Date: March 28, 2013 (Thursday)
Time: 10:45 to 12:00 pm
Place: UH-Maui College (UH-MC) Agricultural Greenhouse & Lawn. Across the Maui Arts & Cultural Center near the recycling center on Wahine Pi’o Avenue. Park in the lot next to the new science building with the vertical windmills on its roof top.
Hawaii Dept. of Agriculture Pesticide categories will be offered for categories 1a, 3, 6 & 10.
Deadline to register is March 27 (Wednesday) to reserve your handouts for this event. You can register by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or by calling the Cooperative
Extension Service at 244-3242 x230. Please provide your name, company & telephone number should we need to contact you of any changes to this event.
Mahalo to: Ann Emmsley and William Jacintho of UH-MC for making this test and field day possible.
WASHINGTON » The Supreme Court agreed today to hear a dispute between a soybean farmer and Monsanto Co. over the company’s efforts to limit farmers’ use of its patented, genetically engineered Roundup Ready seeds.
The justices said they will hear an appeal from Indiana farmer Vernon Hugh Bowman, who is trying to fend off Monsanto’s lawsuit claiming Bowman made unauthorized use of the seeds.
Monsanto’s patented soybean seeds have been genetically engineered to resist its Roundup brand herbicide. When Roundup is sprayed on a field, the product will kill the weeds without harming the crop.
The Obama administration urged the court not to take the case and warned that the outcome could affect patents involving DNA molecules, nanotechnologies and other self-replicating technologies.
Monsanto has a policy that prohibits farmers from saving or reusing the seeds once the crop is grown, ensuring that farmers have to buy new seeds every year.
Bowman used the patented seeds, but also bought cheaper soybeans from a grain elevator and used those to plant a second crop. Most of the new soybeans also were resistant to weed killers, as they initially came from herbicide-resistant seeds, too. Bowman repeated the practice over eight years. Monsanto sued when it learned what he was doing.
The company has filed lawsuits around the country to enforce its policy against saving the seeds for the future.
Bowman’s appeal was among seven new cases the court added today to its calendar for argument during the winter.
The justices also will consider whether a government’s refusal to issue a development permit can amount to “taking” private property for which the owner must be paid.
Genetic engineering has failed to increase the yield of any food crop but has vastly increased the use of chemicals and the growth of “superweeds”, according to a report by 20 Indian, south-east Asian, African and Latin American food and conservation groups representing millions of people.
The so-called miracle crops, which were first sold in the US about 20 years ago and which are now grown in 29 countries on about 1.5bn hectares (3.7bn acres) of land, have been billed as potential solutions to food crises, climate change and soil erosion, but the assessment finds that they have not lived up to their promises.
The report claims that hunger has reached “epic proportions” since the technology was developed. Besides this, only two GM “traits” have been developed on any significant scale, despite investments of tens of billions of dollars, and benefits such as drought resistance and salt tolerance have yet to materialise on any scale.
Most worrisome, say the authors of the Global Citizens’ Report on the State of GMOs, is the greatly increased use of synthetic chemicals, used to control pests despite biotech companies’ justification that GM-engineered crops would reduce insecticide use.
In China, where insect-resistant Bt cotton is widely planted, populations of pests that previously posed only minor problems have increased 12-fold since 1997. A 2008 study in the International Journal of Biotechnology found that any benefits of planting Bt cotton have been eroded by the increasing use of pesticides needed to combat them.
Additionally, soya growers in Argentina and Brazil have been found to use twice as much herbicide on their GM as they do on conventional crops, and a survey by Navdanya International, in India, showed that pesticide use increased 13-fold since Bt cotton was introduced.
Add weed control to the list of elements of growing your 2011 crop that is being complicated as cool, wet weather continues to delay planting in the bulk of the Corn Belt.
If you’re too far delayed in your planting and were originally planning on using a quick tillage trip to knock down early-emerging weeds, you may not be able to pull that off this spring. “Preplant tillage operations can effectively control existing vegetation while preparing a seedbed,” says University of Illinois Extension weed specialist Aaron Hager. “However, as weeds become larger, the effectiveness of tillage to control weeds before planting can be reduced.”
Even if you are able to squeeze in a round of tillage as things start to dry out, it may lose some efficacy, Hager says. “Reduced weed control may also occur when fields are slightly wet during the preplant tillage operation,” he says. “Soil disturbance may not be as extensive when soils are retaining moisture, and clods are more likely to be formed. Weeds sometimes take root again after tillage when soil disturbance is inadequate and soil moisture is abundant.”
So, what’s the answer? If tillage is already done, you don’t have enough time before you plant, or you were already thinking of a burndown application anyway, Hager says you can control winter annual weeds with a little stronger rate of burndown herbicide to “account for the large and dense vegetation.”
A test was conducted at Waiehu Municipal Golf Course to evaluate the efficacy of several herbicide combinations with Roundup, Revolver, MSMA, and Sencor to control herbicide resistant goosegrass using 2 spray applications at 2 weeks apart. You are invited to a field day to observe the results of this test.
Herbicide Field Day on Goosegrass Control
Date: April 7, 2011 (Thursday)
Time: 11:30 am to 12:30 pm
Place: Meet at Waiehu Golf Course “Service Entrance” (6th tee) next to Waiehu Beach Park & Baseball Field located at the end of “Lower Waiehu Beach Road” (MAP) at 11:15 am am. We will then car-pool to the test site at the 17th tee.
A test was conducted on November 9 at Waiehu Municipal Golf Course to evaluate the efficacy of several herbicide mixes used by superintendents and new combinations to control goosegrass. On November 22, another test was conducted to observe the effects on using Revolver and Roundup at different rates for goosegrass control. You are invited to a field day to observe the results of these two tests.
Herbicide Field Day on Goosegrass Control
Date: December 17, 2010 (Friday)
Time: 11:00 am to 12:30 pm
Place: Meet at Waiehu Golf Course “Service Entrance” (6th tee) next to Waiehu Beach Park & Baseball Field located at the end of “Lower Waiehu Beach Road” (MAP) at 10:45 am. We will then car-pool to the test site at the 17th tee.
By A&B spokesperson Meredith Ching
This is my understanding of the situation you have inquired about. On October 23, HC&S conducted an aerial application of an herbicide, Clean Amine, on its Field 212, located along Hana Highway, just west of Paia town. We were attempting to eliminate a noxious weed, castor bean, from the field, as it shades out the crop and depresses sugar yields. Aerial herbicide application was required because the 16-month old cane is too dense to allow access for ground spraying, and the weed height exceeded the canopy of the cane.
The active ingredient in Clean Amine is 2,4-D, which is among the most widely used weed control chemicals in the world and is present in a number of substances labeled for residential use. For more information about 2,4-D, refer to http://www.24d.org. This product is labeled for aerial application, and applications were made in compliance with the pesticide label. The mix used on Field 212 was a very diluted formulation, consisting of about 2% of 2, 4-D by weight.
We fully appreciate that the helicopter’s presence was likely startling for the residents. By design, they fly very low when applying the agricultural substances, for the very reason of minimizing drift and applying the substances most directly on the plants. Further, with this type of application of Clean Amine, the substance is only released when directly over the targeted weeds (which are very visible above the cane).
Further, when HC&S undertakes aerial applications on its fields, we generally do so in the morning when wind speeds are lower and more predictable; gusts and variable winds typically occur later in the day. Wind characteristics are an important factor for aerial applications, and one that HC&S carefully considers prior to any application. A spotter goes along on all aerial applications, monitors and records wind speeds and directions, and watches for any visual signs of drift so that prompt action can be taken to address it.
To: Golf Course & Landscape Industries
From: Norman M. Nagata, Extension Agent
An herbicide test using low rates of Roundup Promax was conducted on goosegrass that exhibited resistance to Revolver, MSMS, and Sencor at Waiehu Municipal Golf Course. You are invited to a field day to see these results at 13 weeks after treatment.
Date: July 30, 2010 (Friday)
Time: 10:45 am to 12:00 pm
Place: Meet at Waiehu Golf Course “Service Entrance” (6th tee) next to Waiehu Beach Park & Baseball Field located at the end of “Lower Waiehu Beach Road” at 10:45 am. We will then car-pool to the test site at the 17th tee.
- 11:00 – 11:15 am Overview of goosegrass control
- 11:15 – 11:35 Roundup Promax & experimental protocol
- 11:35 – 12:00 pm Observe & discuss Roundup results on goosegrass & common bermudagrass
Recertification credits will be offered for:
- Hawaii Dept. of Agriculture Pesticide categories 1a, 3, 6 & 10
- Golf Course Superintendents Assoc. of America
Deadline to register (and to apply for recertification credits) is July 29 (Thursday).
You can register by contacting email@example.com or by calling the Cooperative Extension Service at 244-3242 x230. Please provide your name, company & telephone number should there be any changes on this field day.
This project was partially supported by Monsanto Company and the County of Maui.
Mahalo to Ron Kubo, Superintendent at Waiehu Golf Course for making this test possible.