By Brian Hefty

I have great news for you today. There are even more price crashes with certain input costs! Below are 4 categories where prices are at an all-time low. Because of this, the ROI with using these products has never been better, and you may need to incorporate these things into your overall program to cut your costs and boost your yields and income.

  1. Generic Pursuit. Yes, it’s an ALS product, and there are lots of ALS-resistant weeds. However, in combination with other soybean herbicides, Pursuit is still awesome if you have weeds like black nightshade, wild buckwheat, velvetleaf, and mustard species. Pursuit has suppression on many other broadleaves and grasses, too, so it’s a great helper in your herbicide program. Here’s the best news, generic Pursuit is now at an all-time low price. For around $3 per acre, you can throw a half-rate into your tankmix. At that low of a rate, carryover shouldn’t be an issue in a soybean-corn or soybean-wheat rotation, yet you still get a lot of activity for the money.
  2. Generic Quadris. While name-brand Quadris has come way down, you can likely find the generic version in the $2.50 to $5 per acre range, depending on if you are talking half-rate or full-rate. As little as it costs, it’s almost crazy not to throw it in once or twice a year for plant health benefits and better disease control. If you are concerned about resistance, add a product like Tilt (Group 3) or Topsin (Group 1), as these products are also dirt-cheap now. If you have heavy disease pressure or tough-to-control diseases, you will likely have better luck with Trivapro, Priaxor, Preemptor, Acropolis, or Stratego YLD…all great two or three mode of action products, but if you want a cheap Group 11 (similar to Headline, Evito, etc.), generic Quadris is tough to beat.
  3. Generic Dual. Here again, the name brand Dual is pretty inexpensive now, too, but the generic is down in the range of $4 to $8 per acre, depending on the rate you use. At that low price, it is much easier to justify and to afford if you want to add residual to your program in corn or soybeans. Most Dual-type products can be tankmixed with almost any herbicide, and they can be sprayed early post-emerge in both corn and soybeans. If you aren’t adding Dual or another Group 15 (Warrant, Zidua, Outlook, etc.) to your early post spray, you may want to consider it. Farmers using the Group 15’s in this way are getting far better late-season weed control.
  4. HPPDs. I have saved the best for last. In the last year, the bottom has dropped out of the HPPD market. Whether you are talking name-brand or generic, premixes or straight goods, HPPD pricing has come down. Because of this, you now have a great opportunity to use an HPPD in your corn herbicide program as PART of the answer to overall weed control. I want to strongly caution you, though. We are already seeing HPPD weed resistance in spots, so do not use an HPPD alone, and do not use multiple applications of HPPD in the same year. For example, if you want to use Laudis or Callisto post, that’s fine, but use a different mode of action pre-emerge, maybe Verdict or SureStart. If you want to use Acuron or Acuron Flexi pre (both contain Callisto and another HPPD), that’s great, but don’t spray Callisto post. Use something like Status to clean up any escapes.

I love new technology, and in many cases there are better products than the cheap, old generics. That said, if you know how to use these things in the right way as part of your overall program, they can add some dollars to your bottom line. We will talk more about all these categories at our Ag PhD Agronomy Workshops coming up in January, so please join us!