Explore chemical weed-control strategies for Florida citrus growers from a former UF/IFAS Extension agent.

Weeds are a constant concern in Florida citrus groves. Steve Futch, a former UF/IFAS multi-county citrus Extension agent shared recommendations for chemical weed-control strategies in a recent 2021 virtual Southeast Regional Fruit and Vegetable Conference, according to a Citrus Industry article. See the details below.

Recommendations for Chemical Weed-control Strategies

Chemical weed-control strategies will vary depending on soil type, variety, method of herbicide application, and the presence of specific weed species, and the site location, according to the article.

Futch maintained in the article that there are generally two types of herbicides used as part of weed-control strategies:  “1) soil-applied preemergence herbicides that should be applied to fairly clean soil surfaces prior to weed emergence and 2) foliar-applied postemergence herbicides that are applied after germination of weed seed.”

Futch’s recommendations from the article include:

  • “Preemergence herbicides are generally applied two to three times per year” and “application should be properly timed so that the maximum amount of herbicide is in the upper soil profile (0 to 2 inches) slightly before peak weed emergence.
  • It is recommended to rotate “between herbicide classes to minimize the potential for development of herbicide resistance,” such as the common resistance to glyphosate.
  • “When using herbicides around young trees, care should be taken to avoid herbicide spray contact with tree bark, stems or foliage as injury may occur.” Its recommended to use a protective nonporous plastic-like wrap on the trunks of young trees.

Find a complete listing of herbicide recommendations, including rates, here.

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