Armoury expanded for autumn’s blackgrass battle

Arable growers have a new weapon in the fight against blackgrass following the approval of clethodim for use in oilseed rape.

The active is registered for use in many countries across the world and is now available in the UK, following the launch by Interfarm UK.

Centurion MAX is recommended for the control of blackgrass, annual meadow grass, wheat volunteers and barley volunteers in winter oilseed rape and sugar beet.

“One of the special attributes is that although it is an ACCase inhibitor product, it is active on strains of blackgrass that are resistant to other ACCase products,” explains David Stormonth of Interfarm.

He points to Stephen Moss of Rothamsted Research, who said at the recent Crop Protection in Southern Britain Conference that clethodim has a valuable role to play in controlling blackgrass in the UK.

“Clethodim gave significantly better levels of control of blackgrass than tepraloxydim and other ACCase inhibiting herbicides, even though the blackgrass populations were known to show high resistance to this group,” said Mr Moss.

However, Dr Stormonth highlights that it must be used wisely in a blackgrass control strategy to manage resistance.

“For example, in oilseed rape it will be extremely important to use it in a programme with herbicides with different modes of action such as propyzamide or carbetamide. Such products should be used either in mix or after Centurion MAX. This way, any survivors from a clethodim treatment should be removed by the other herbicide, thus preventing or reducing any seed return.”

With regard to timing of Centurion MAX, it can be applied from the four true leaf stage of winter oilseed rape crop. It will control blackgrass and cereal volunteers from the three leaf stage to five tillers, with annual meadow grass from three leaves to tillering.

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Free blackgrass resistance tests from BASF