Glyphosate prices have more than doubled since last fall and it seems possible that prices will continue their upward trend. Fortunately most ag co-ops in the RRV have already purchased their anticipated glyphosate needs for the summer. A brief survey of co-op agronomists and others indicate they think supplies may be difficult to find for any ag business that runs short this summer and tries to find additional product. If you haven’t already done so, it might not be a bad idea for you to lock in your needs for the year as prices are not expected to decline.
The typical weed management strategy for soybean producers in the RRV has been two passes of glyphosate. This practice has been cheap, effective, and simple. Though not as cheap as last year, glyphosate is far from being expensive when compared to other input costs. The price increase however, may make a few preemergence herbicides more competitive and worth a second look. Tables 1 and 2 compare the average prices (survey of 3 ag dealers) for glyphosate and four preemergence herbicides that can be used in high soil pH areas. Obviously these prices will vary based on rates and additives, but a single application of glyphosate is still a little cheaper than the average use rates for preemergence herbicides. However, these herbicides bring a couple of other things to the table that you may also want to consider.
Extension IPM Specialist—NW MN