Cleaning the Combine is Necessary for Herbicide Resistant Weed Control
Posted: August 31, 2016. Originally posted by Penn State University
Combines are one mechanism for the spread of Palmer Amaranth and waterhemp as well as other herbicide-resistant seeds from one field to another; thorough cleaning and knowledge of the combine’s prior use can prevent the introduction of new herbicide-resistant weeds to your fields. Here are some tips on stopping the combine from spreading the seeds from the weeds:
- Steps can be taken to help ensure that herbicide-resistant weed seeds, such as Palmer Amaranth and waterhemp, are not spread to new fields via combine.
- Harvest herbicide-resistant weed-infested fields last.
- Know whether the combine entering the field has recently been in a field containing herbicide-resistant weeds such as waterhemp or Palmer Amaranth. If so, take the time needed to clean it or consider other available options.
- Herbicide-resistant pigweeds were introduced to Pennsylvania through transportation from other areas such as the Midwest and southeast where populations are more abundant. Therefore, when purchasing a used combine from out of state with known Palmer and waterhemp populations, take the necessary time to completely clean the combine before use.
- Utilize an air compressor to remove the bulk of the weed seeds from the combine.
- Check the rock trap, as weed seeds and debris may be caught here. Drop the rock trap and blow it out with the air compressor between fields.
- Open trapdoors to clean the grain auger and tailings processor with an air compressor.
- On a rainy day, consider a thorough 4-5 hour combine cleaning as a rainy day activity.
- Since weed seeds can also travel on tillage equipment, clean this equipment after infested fields as well.