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Glyphosate Resistance So Widespread Herbicide No Longer Useful to Farmers
Glyphosate-resistant Palmer amaranth is so widespread in the mid-southern U.S. that glyphosate is no longer a useful herbicide to many farmers in that area, says University of Arkansas weed scientist Jason Norsworthy.

Fifty per cent of Arkansas’ cotton fields are now hand weeded and some producers have even lost their farms.

Glyphosate-resistant Palmer amaranth infests 61 per cent of Arkansas soy acres and 87 per cent of its cotton acres. More than 2.5 million acres are affected even though the first resistant Palmer amaranth wasn’t discovered in Arkansas until 2006 — 10 years after Roundup Ready soybeans were first introduced.

Scientists believe about one weed in every billion is naturally resistant to a herbicide. Applying a herbicide repeatedly kills the susceptible weeds and leaves or “selects” the resistant ones.

While new herbicides are needed, they alone aren’t the answer. The key is diversity.

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