On The Farm: Crop Spraying - KFYRTV.COM - Bismarck, ND - News, Weather, Sports

On The Farm: Crop Spraying

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The North Dakota landscape is covered in crop fields... everything from corn to canola. Agriculture is a vast industry, and it can be complicated one for people who aren't involved.

It's that time of year again, where people regularly see farmers out in their tractors, working in the fields. But for the average person, it's hard to tell what those farmers may be up to. But here's some insight into what's going on this time of year.

Seeds are in the ground, and crops are starting to pop up. North Dakota is in the heart of another farming season. But the average-Joe may not always know what's going on when they see a tractor in the field. This time of year, its crop spraying. “Typically a crop gets a burn-down with a glyphosate prior to plant or right after planting, and typically after that it's 30 days until you do your in-crop herbicides,” said Steve Ibach, a Sales Manager for United Agronomy in Berthold.

Crop protection technology, which includes herbicides, fungicides, insecticides, and fertilizers, helps control the thousands of weed and insect species, and diseases that can ruin a crop's yield. “Of course we can't control the weather, but when we talk about fertilizers, herbicides, fungicides, and insecticides, it's all just trying to protect maximum yield. We aren't necessary gaining yield on anything, this crop starts out with a ceiling the day it's seeded, from there it goes down. All we're trying to do is preserve as much yield as we can, with whatever we apply on the field,” said Ibach.

These chemicals get sprayed on crops several times per season. It can be done on ground by a tractor, or in the air by plane. And with mother nature having an effect on everything in Farming, agronomists and farmers trying to spray their fields, have had to deal with the weather as well. “The weather is always an issue every year, we always deal with it. We deal with sitting because of wind, sitting because of rain, fields are too muddy. As an industry we try to do the best we can to get things done in the most timely fashion,” Ibach stated.

Ibach says the use of these crop protection technologies helps increase food production, and decreases the cost of food, “Without the chemicals and fertilizers that we use, we would probably grow half the crop, which would end up leaving people hungry.”

People who have questions about what they see going on in crop fields should feel comfortable and stop in at their local agronomy office for information.


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