We are in an era where more weeds are becoming resistant to glyphosate and other herbicides. There are a few reasons for this and one of them is improper spraying practices. Too many people spray the wrong time and the wrong way. When people stunt weeds verses completely kill weeds, this sets us up for herbicide resistant weeds.
There has been more people wanting to get away from using herbicides or at least doing their best to dramatically reduce the use of them. This can be accomplished. Many farmers for decades have been organic. The techniques and practices are possible for the average food plotter to practice integrated weed management or move to a complete “organic” program.
What can one do to become “organic”?
Plant seeds that are high in germination rates with low weed seed levels.
Plant enough “pure live seed” to establish at least 100% effective sward density.
Plant in a timely manner to allow “explosive” growth post plant.
Plant to flush weeds and naturally terminate weeds by lightly working the soil when using conventional practices.
No till food plotting to reduce weed flush
Reduce soil compaction in the root zone. Increase soil oxygen levels in the 2-4” soil zone.
Clip weeds in perennial plots before weeds produce viable seed heads.
Plant forages that match your soil pH, nutrient levels, soil texture and geographic location.
Plant forages that reduce future weed growth. Examples being radish, sorghums, buckwheat, cereal grains, etc.
Maintain living roots. Keep the soil covered with actively growing forages as many days a year as possible.
Plant nurse crops and companion crops.
Don’t feed the weeds by improper fertilization practices.
We all should do our best to practice integrated weed management. Even if the end goal isn’t to become organic, there are many short term and long-term benefits by using basic planting principles to better control weed challenges.