Cotton and soybean farmers have just a few days left to use three important dicamba products: Engenia, Xtendimax and Fexapan.
Growers and commercial applicators may use existing stocks that were in their possession on June 3, 2020 – the effective date of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit’s decision to vacate dicamba registrations – until July 31.
“As far as the Engenia, the Xtendimax and Fexapan, we’ve got (a couple of) days to make an application. Then we don’t need to be making those applications anymore this year,” said University of Georgia Cooperative Extension weed scientist Stanley Culpepper. “The future is still a long way away. Hopefully, in October, the EPA will make a decision regarding re-registration. Of course, re-registration will determine whether or not we’ll be able to use these three products next year.
“Our growers are very vulnerable without this technology. It’s a very effective technology, not only in research but also on our farms. We’re doing everything we can to generate the information, generate the data, provide to the EPA and the Department of Agriculture to support the technology.”
The ruling from a three-judge panel of the federal appeals court in San Francisco overturned EPA’s approval of the use of dicamba, a weed killer used on millions of acres of soybean and cotton crops and instrumental in management of palmer amaranth.
While the court’s decision in early June provided some uncertainty to growers in the middle of the season, the EPA’s decision to provide farmers an extra month and a half of use was a game changer, according to Culpepper.
“That was critical. If they had not come back after that court order and allowed us to do that, this crop would be a disaster. Right now it looks pretty good,” Culpepper said. “Overall, we’re in really good shape. The EPA allowing us to use that tool was critical.”
Tavium registration was not revoked and therefore the herbicide was not impacted. Culpepper hopes growers that didn’t have enough of the three banned products in stock were able to obtain Tavium.
“We were able to get Tavium into the state. Tavium is basically the label Dicamba plus Dual or Metolachlor. We were still able to buy that product. Those growers that didn’t have Engenia, didn’t have Xtendimax, didn’t have Fexapan, hopefully, they were able to get enough of the Tavium to make the system work,” Culpepper said. “I personally have not heard too many complaints. I know there’s probably some growers that didn’t have exactly what they wanted. But for the most part I think we survived quite well considering where we were at in early June.”