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CULTIVATOR DESIGN FOR INTERROW WEED CONTROL IN NO-TILL CORN
Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan www.asabe.orgCitation: Applied Engineering in Agriculture. VOL. 14(4): 353-361. (doi: 10.13031/2013.19394) @1998
Authors: K. R. Paarlberg, H. M. Hanna, D. C. Erbach, R. G. Hartzler
Keywords: Cultivation equipment, Weed control, Tillage, Herbicide
More than 95% of Iowa row crop acres are treated with herbicides. Such extensive use is an environmental
concern. Banding of herbicides over the crop row, along with mechanical cultivation to control interrow weeds, has been
proposed as a way to reduce herbicide use. Though cultivation is used on 74% of Iowa corn (Zea mays L.) land,
herbicides are applied in a band on only 17% of the corn acres. This indicates that cultivation is not relied upon for
interrow weed control. The risk that weather conditions will hinder completion of mechanical cultivation seems to
discourage the use of herbicide banding. Higher speed cultivation could improve the odds of timely completion of needed
cultivation. An experiment was conducted on a Clarion loam soil near Boone, Iowa in 1993 through 1996 to determine
the effect of cultivator design and speed, when combined with the banding of chemicals, to control weeds. Three cultivator
styles, two bands [19 cm (7.5 in.) and 38 cm (15 in.)], and two speeds were tested. A single cultivation management
strategy was used. Data were taken in a no-till continuous corn rotation on 76-cm (30-in.) row spacings.