University weed scientists from farm country estimate that 1.1 million acres of soybeans have been accidentally damaged by dicamba in spite of stricter usage limits. Those are the latest findings from a University of Missouri report.
Damage was highest in the number one soybean-growing state, Illinois, where 500,000 of those 1.1 million damaged acres are located. Arkansas was second with an estimated 300,000 acres. By way of comparison, an agriculture dot com article says there were 2.5 million acres of soybean damage reported at this point in 2017.
Agronomy Professor Bob Hartzler of Iowa State University says state officials have received 121 complaints of herbicide drift, compared to 82 complaints in early July of 2017. Hartzler wrote that “The significant increase in pesticide misuse cases during the first part of the growing season indicates a pesticide stewardship problem.”
The Environmental Protection Agency gave a two-year license to dicamba, so the agency will soon need to revisit the decision on allowing the use of the herbicide.