Wednesday, 26 March 2014
Using paraquat has some surprising benefits for sugarcane growers, which can result in higher sugar yields and improved soil structure in addition to broad spectrum weed control. Paraquat’s fast, contact-only action can be used to great advantage when establishing a new crop and at harvest time.
After planting a new crop from the stem segments known as ‘setts’ or when a ratoon crop grows from the cut stem bases after harvest, an application of paraquat can stimulate the growth of more shoots. If crops are sprayed 15-...
Monday, 24 February 2014
How can paraquat, a non-selective herbicide, improve the yield and quality of livestock grazing and forage?
The answer lies in its unique broad spectrum contact action that gives excellent control of annual weeds but only temporary suppression of perennial grasses.
Grass pastures need to be actively managed to maximise the quality of nutrition provided for livestock. Using paraquat and no-till seeding gives the opportunity for farmers to improve their existing pastures.
When establishing pastures,...
Friday, 07 February 2014
News and features about paraquat illustrating its multitude of uses and the benefits it brings to farmers around the world are regularly posted on the Paraquat Information Center website. Here are the highlights from some popular recent articles.
Brazil’s no-till boom fights climate change
Paraquat has always played a pivotal role in the development of no-till cropping systems in Brazil, as elsewhere. Not only has no-till helped to propel Brazil to the status of an agricultural ‘superpower...
Friday, 10 January 2014
Workers on tea estates in northern India have been undergoing training in the safe and effective use of crop protection products, including paraquat.
The outstanding rainfastness of paraquat makes it invaluable for weed control in the monsoon season. Using paraquat has many other benefits, which result in higher productivity, lower costs and protect the soil from erosion.
Representatives of Syngenta, the company behind the original and leading brand of paraquat, Gramoxone, have been discussing its many benefits, and demonstrating...
Monday, 16 December 2013
Paraquat has an important role to play in vegetable cropping because its unique characteristics are particularly suited to the challenges posed by controlling weeds in these diverse crops. Some vegetables are grown on a field scale, many are grown in greenhouses, while the majority are grown by smallholders and in gardens.
Vegetable growers face many challenges, including erosion and leaching of pesticides from highly irrigated light soils; soil compaction from intensive cultivations; and the pressure to multi-crop and harvest early to...
Monday, 21 October 2013
Indonesian farmers rely on paraquat to increase efficiency and productivity, generating more income and more time for their families. This has been confirmed by recent surveys carried out in two important agricultural districts of Indonesia.
Maize and paddy rice are the major crops grown in Grobogan District, central Java. Since 1999, farmers in Grobogan have been expanding their maize growing. This was initiated by a change in government policy to encourage agroforestry.
Maize can be grown in young teak plantations while the...
Monday, 09 September 2013
Using paraquat is an increasingly important part of successful peanut production. It has three key advantages: it controls a broad spectrum of weeds; it can be used selectively to keep crops weed-free during the critical early growth period; and, it is effective against herbicide resistant weeds.
Peanuts are low-growing crops that do not compete well with weeds. Growers must use weed management strategies to keep their crops free from weeds until the rows meet and close the canopy if they are to achieve good yields. Unfortunately, US...
Wednesday, 24 July 2013
Paraquat controls weeds effectively even if it rains within 15 to 30 minutes of spraying. This excellent rainfastness is unique amongst herbicides and gives farmers important practical benefits. More work can be achieved in between showers and weed control will be better than when using alternative herbicides such as glyphosate or glufosinate and surprised by unpredicted rainfall.
Paraquat’s rainfastness was immediately obvious from its early development in the 1960s in the plantations of South-East Asia.1 In...
Monday, 24 June 2013
Coffee is the most widely traded agricultural commodity from the tropics, providing work for over 100 million people, of which about 25 million are smallholder producers in developing countries. Traditionally, and in poorer farming communities, coffee is weeded by hand hoeing or slashing with machetes. This is labor intensive and time consuming, limiting opportunities for other activities including education. Effective use of herbicides can very significantly reduce the resources needed to control weeds that rob yield and make spray...
Tuesday, 07 May 2013
Paraquat’s economic benefits to farmers and national trade balances have been quantified in a recent publication. Results collated from farm-scale field experiments and surveys in China, the Philippines and Vietnam present strong evidence that using paraquat contributes to significant increases in the annual income of smallholder farmers worth up to $1000/ha each year.
The full paper published in the journal Outlooks on Pest Management can be read here. The main findings are summarised below.
Thursday, 21 March 2013
Spraying paraquat towards the end of daylight hours can boost the efficacy of weed control. The same factors are at work as when better effects are obtained when paraquat is applied on a cloudy day. These usually result in longer lasting weed control.
Sunlight is necessary for paraquat’s herbicidal activity, but it can also limit the effect. Herbicide mixture options are available to achieve similar effects on more difficult weeds that tend to regrow.
Time of day effects
Herbicides from various classes have been...
Thursday, 21 February 2013
The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has recently published a report emphasising that to meet global food security needs it will be essential to adopt best practices in soil and water management.
By 2050, rising population and consumption are expected to demand up to 70% more food production globally, and 100% more in developing countries, compared to current production levels.1
Higher yields … at a price
In the report, ‘The state of the world’s land and water resources...
Monday, 07 January 2013
Tea production is continuing to grow rapidly, especially in China and Vietnam, and paraquat is helping to achieve sustainable cropping systems. Tea is often grown on hillsides where the soil is very prone to erosion. Paraquat only removes the top growth of well-established weeds, keeping roots intact, and does not affect the germination of new seedlings, allowing vegetation to re-establish after 1-2 months. This helps to stabilise the soil and resist erosion.
Research in Sri Lanka has found that paraquat-based weed control systems...
Monday, 03 December 2012
Paraquat has an important role in fighting the increasing problem of glyphosate resistant weeds. These now threaten not only cost-effective weed control in many crops, but also the future of sustainable farming systems.
An in-depth article on the topic of glyphosate resistant weeds has been added to the Paraquat Information Center’s Knowledge Bank. You can read this article here.
Why glyphosate is important
Glyphosate is by far the world’s most widely used crop protection chemical and has been called a ‘...
Tuesday, 06 November 2012
Paraquat can be used to improve the species composition of pastures for livestock grazing and reduce the carryover of grass weed seeds into following cereal crops. The technique used is known as spray-topping.
Rotation of grass pastures for sheep and other livestock with wheat is a common cropping system in Australia. Spray-topping with paraquat is used to control problem grass weeds such as barley grass (Hordeum glaucum and H. leporinum) and annual ryegrass (Lolium rigidum).
Spray-topping involves spraying...
Friday, 05 October 2012
Volunteer plants – those that grow from seed shed by the previous crop – are weeds that bring the same problems as wild ones, or worse.
Volunteers can form a ‘green bridge’ from one crop to the next carrying insect pests and fungal diseases. Volunteers reduce yields and quality, and hinder crop management. They can be difficult to control, especially if they are growing in a new crop of the same species.
Options for controlling volunteers before planting the next crop can be particularly limited if they...
Tuesday, 28 August 2012
Soya stands out from other major crops as a broad leaved plant rather than a grass. Importantly, it is also a legume, so plants supply their own needs for nitrogen fertilizer while increasing the fertility of the land. Soybeans are rich in oil, protein and carbohydrate; and the crop has been highly developed by plant breeders and agronomists, being the first GM crop to be introduced. Soybeans are a staple food and animal feed. Whole beans provide flours; soya oil is used in cooking and food; protein-rich soya meal left after oil extraction...
Tuesday, 24 July 2012
Paraquat is an important tool in the armoury of Filipino farmers in their battle against weeds. Farming is one of the most important industries in the Philippines. More than one third of the country’s labor-force works on farms. Most farms are small, averaging only 2 ha in size, and farmers need to grow a variety of higher value crops in order to be profitable. This is where the agronomic and environmental properties of paraquat and its versatility are invaluable.
A recent survey of Filipino farmers and their use of paraquat...
Tuesday, 26 June 2012
Mexico plays a pivotal role in global food security despite most Mexican farmers being smallholders. Not only is agriculture an important sector in the country’s economy, but also Mexico is home to CIMMYT, one of the world’s leading agricultural research centers and the place where the crop production ‘Green Revolution’ of the 1960s and 1970’s began. Paraquat is a valuable tool for Mexican farmers, enabling reduced tillage systems and inter-row weed control, especially in corn, the most widely grown crop.
Wednesday, 06 June 2012
Maize, or corn, provides staple food for much of the world’s population in developing countries where it is used to make porridge, bread and tortillas, and also the fast-foods of western society - breakfast cereals, sweet corn and popcorn. All around the world, maize grain is a basic livestock feed, and the crop can be cut while still green to make silage as a winter feed. Also, over recent years maize has been increasingly used as a feedstock for the production of bioethanol.
Paraquat is a versatile and important herbicide for...