Monday, July 25, 2011

As weeds adapt to herbicides, farmers forced to grab a hoe

Weeds in cotton fields have gotten so tenacious — some with stems 4 inches around — that farmers are paying itinerant crews to chop them down by hand.

"In the Bootheel, they're hiring people to go out there with hoes," said Blake Hurst, president of the Missouri Farm Bureau. "I swung a hoe for 15 years, and I fail to see the romance in it."

The problem, farmers and weed scientists say, is getting worse: Weeds are becoming increasingly resistant to Monsanto Co.'s Roundup, sold generically as glyphosate, forcing farmers to use other herbicides or "multiple modes of action."

The Source

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