Minimizing Injury From PRE Herbicides

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We’re planting irrigated cotton fields this week. Topsoil is drying out even after a few inches of rain a week ago.  UGA Extension Cotton Weed Specialist Dr. Stanley Culpepper was down putting in a small trial hoping to determine cause of herbicide injury in a field. This field has seen persistent injury where soil type could be a factor. We were also discussing the timing of our pre-emergence herbicides and getting the herbicides activated following planting. Here are steps from Dr. Culpepper to decrease herbicide injury.

Steps to minimize injury from PRE herbicides:

  1. Plant high vigor seed into moist soil (preplant irrigation often needed).
  2. Shallow planting depth increases injury potential.
  3. Apply proper residual herbicides withint 24 hours of planting.
  4. If feasible, irrigate between 30 hours after planting and prior to 24 hours before emergence, but then do not irrigate again until at least 5 days after emergence. irrigate to develop a perfect cotton stand; however, limit irrigation events during the first 2 weeks after planting to as few as possible after activiating residual herbicides.
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