Plant Defense Systems Plant closing with touch


The response to this has been to try and use stronger concentration and spray multiple at the same time. We’re having to mix pesticides and use stronger strengths due to resistance. Rotating herbicides has also been touted as a method to reduce the risk of resistance, but research has shown this to have the opposite effect. ( What worked, instead, was mixing multiple herbicides in the same tank and spraying simultaneously. Their large experiment, including 105 grain fields across Illinois, showed tank-mixing was 83 times less likely to lead to glyphosate resistance.  The study had a powerful impact, with recommendations changing nearly overnight; tank-mixing herbicides is now de rigueur. But one of the study’s authors is now urging farmers and industry players to remember tank-mixing only delays the evolution of resistance. “I worry this practice has become overused. It’s too simplistic to think all you need to solve the challenges of resistance is to go on using herbicides but in a slightly different way,” He notes waterhemp is now resistant to herbicides from at least seven modes of action, despite the advantages of tank-mixtures. And some waterhemp populations are resistant to herbicides to which they have never been exposed. In other words, herbicide resistance is a complex and fast-moving target. And we’re not keeping up.( If nothing else, this section on the importance of molecular biology, genetics, biochemistry, ecology, physics and pretty much every branch of science can be used as ammo next time you hear someone talking about dumb farmers.

“Plant disease management has not significantly changed in the past 50 years, even as great strides have been made in the understanding of fungal
biology and the etiology of plant disease.”

Resistance at its core is all about reacting to changing environmental conditions and exposures, so the quicker a population can make changes, the quicker a population can work around it. Smaller organisms have a double advantage in that they can.

the only one sure-fire, long-term strategy to permanently eliminate the need to use mechanical or chemical disturbances to “control” weeds, pests and pathogens is to . The strategy is to seriously think about the environment that our actions are actively creating. Do our actions create conditions that give the opportunistic, r-strategists a competitive advantage or is it one that is conducive the growth and sustainability of a rich diversity of life, not least of which are our beneficial fungi? The latter option can only be done by following