Mr Bittman, Reducing Herbicide Use on Farms is Not Simple

Author: Guy, Pesticide

Source: Outlooks on Pest Management, Volume 23, Number 6, December 2012 , pp. 287-287(1)

Publisher: Research Information

Buy & download fulltext article:

OR

Price: $47.40 plus tax (Refund Policy)

Abstract:

The New York Times writer Mark Bittman writes glowingly about a recent study that reported on an Iowa experiment in which crop yields were maintained while herbicides to control weed populations were reduced. Bittman concludes that, “there was only upside – and no downside at all” in this study. Rhetorically, Bittman asks, “Why wouldn?t a farmer go this route?” That question was studied by rural sociologists from the University of Missouri and their findings show that it is not so simple to reduce herbicide use – there are serious downsides. The study that Bittman cites reduced herbicide use by switching from spraying the entire field (broadcast spraying) to spraying just down the row of plants (banded spraying) and using cultivation to kill weeds between the rows. This technique of “banding” the herbicide spray in combination with tillage was widely-used several decades ago, but farmers changed to spraying the entire field without the need to cultivate. The sociologists asked farmers why they abandoned the practice and if they would consider using it again. The answers were a firm no.

Keywords: BANDED SPRAYING; BANDING; CULTIVATION; LABOR; WATER; WEEDS; YIELD

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1564/23dec14

Publication date: December 1, 2012

More about this publication?
Related content

Tools

Key

Free Content
Free content
New Content
New content
Open Access Content
Open access content
Subscribed Content
Subscribed content
Free Trial Content
Free trial content

Text size:

A | A | A | A
Share this item with others: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages. print icon Print this page