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Navigating Weed Control Challenges: The Crucial Role of Cultural Approaches

News - 06.11.23

Jodie Littleford, Agrii's technical manager for combinable crop trials, sheds light on the significance of cultural approaches.

Pre-emergence sequence and stacks - latest results from Agrii trials

As new modes of action, such as cinmethylin and aclonifen, enhance pre-emergence programmes, it's essential to recognise that cultural control remains a cornerstone in effective weed management.

Jodie Littleford, Agrii's technical manager for combinable crop trials, sheds light on the significance of cultural approaches.


Balancing Firepower and Crop Competition

While the introduction of potent herbicides adds firepower to weed control, Jodie emphasises the importance of cultural controls.

These methods prevent the need for excessive herbicide use, reducing the risk of compromising crop competition and inadvertently facilitating weed growth.

Front-Loading with Strength

Jodie recommends a strategic approach by front-loading pre-emergence herbicide programmes with robust options. Luximo Plus + Orient, a cinmethylin-based combination, proved highly effective, achieving over 90% control in a heavy blackgrass scenario.

The combination's three modes of action set the stage for successful control, with the flexibility to top up if needed using residual and contact follow-ups.

Programmed Precision for Ryegrass Challenges

Tackling resilient ryegrass demands a programmed approach. In a 2021 trial in Yorkshire, Luximo Plus + Orient significantly reduced levels to 30 heads/sq m, outperforming flufenacet-based options with only two modes of action.

A peri-emergence follow-up with Octavian Met + Pontos further reduced levels to 7 heads/sq m. Jodie questions the potential sacrifice of crop competition in post-emergence applications like Hatra, highlighting the need to first alleviate weed pressure through cultural approaches.

Strategic Considerations and Spring Cropping

While acknowledging the achievability of good control, Jodie underscores the associated costs. She introduces the idea that, in severe weed problems, spring cropping might emerge as a more viable approach.

This shift in perspective prompts a consideration of the delicate balance between effective weed control and preserving robust crop competition.


The comments shared by Jodie Littleford serves as a guide for farmers navigating the complexities of weed control.

Integrating cultural approaches alongside potent herbicides not only enhances control but also raises thoughtful considerations for long-term strategies, emphasising the importance of striking the right balance in the pursuit of successful crop management.

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