Test wheat seed germination if harvest aid herbicides were used
Welcomed, but perhaps untimely rains delayed wheat harvest in some areas of Kansas to the extent that herbicide applications had to be made to burn down weeds prior to harvest. Farmers intending to hold back some of their harvest for use as seed this fall should have that wheat tested for germination.
Some herbicides, such as glyphosate, are not recommended on wheat to be saved as seed. Most, if not all, of the common herbicides used as pre-harvest aids in wheat require that the grain be below 30 percent moisture before application. At or below this moisture content, the grain is post-physiological maturity and unlikely, or less likely, to be adversely affected. Seed germination can be greatly inhibited if pre-harvest herbicide applications are made at an improper stage of grain maturity.
The only way to be sure that germination has not been harmed by herbicide application is to have the seed tested by a professional laboratory such as Kansas Crop Improvement Association’s (KCIA’s) Seed Quality Testing Lab. A producer may be tempted to conduct their own germination test, but home tests may not tell the whole story.
Whether seed germination has been harmed by a herbicide is really only part of the story. Seed germination is relatively easy to conclude from a germination test. What is not quite so obvious is the potential damage may have been done to seed even though it appears to germinate.
The trained analysts at KCIA evaluate each seedling in a test to make sure it has all the essential structures to establish a plant in the field. The lack of roots or a damaged coleoptile resulting from a herbicide application may have a profound effect on that seed’s ability to establish itself when planted.
It would be good if every producer plant Kansas certified seed, which has been professionally cleaned and tested, but if a producer has a legal right to use saved seed, we think it is a prudent step to have that seed professionally tested.
Information on KCIA seed laboratory services can be found at www.kscrop.org/labservices.aspx or, call 785-532-6118.
- DuPont Crop Protection to sell certain assets to Bayer
- New research study shows the value of neonicotinoids
- Alltech Crop Science acquires South African distributor
- Monsanto invests to transform plant breeding
- Fungicide-resistant soybean diseases spreading
- Most crop futures are starting Thursday on a strong note
- ValueAct buys stake in fertilizer dealer Agrium
- Critics of Dow herbicide sue U.S. EPA over approval
- Six tips to help professionals take leaps of faith
- Nitrogen fertilization rates for corn production
- Landmark Services Co-op, Curry Seeds sign agreement
- No-till may not bring boost in global crop yields
- Los Angeles City Council votes to explore ban on GMO plants
- ASA issues statement on EPA’s neonicotinoid study
- Economist: Taxing P could reduce risk of algal blooms
- Commentary: Government wants farmers to quit farming
- Resistant weeds not controlled by fall residuals
- First responders need to prepare for agroterrorism