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PRECISION AG UPDATE S P RI N G 2017

New Hope for Pigweed Infestation In the 2017 growing season, Southeast cotton and soybean growers will be able to legally apply auxin herbicides in-season to new seed traits tolerant to them. Auxin herbicides expected to be cleared at the federal and state level for legal in-season use in the 2017 cropping season on resistant seed are Monsanto’s Xtendimax with its new dicamba formulation, BASF’s new dicamba formulation sold as Engenia and Dow AgroSciences’ Enlist Duo, which includes its new 2,4-D formulation. This is welcome news to many farmers, who are constantly battling pernicious weeds, such as Palmer amaranth, also known as pigweed. According to Stanley Culpepper, University of Georgia Extension PHOTO CREDIT: DELTAFARMPRESS.COM weed specialist, the Georgia cotton industry has invested more than $1 billion just to control Palmer amaranth in the last decade. “We (cotton growers) desperately need help and new tools to manage this pest. We’ve lost some conservation tillage (due to the problem). We’re doing more tillage. The use of herbicides and our herbicide input cost has skyrocketed to control this plant.” The herbicide glyphosate, which is perhaps better known by the Monsanto trade name Roundup, became the world’s most popular herbicide after the first glyphosate-resistant crops became available in the ’90s, as farmers could use it to kill unwanted weeds without damaging their crops. Some strains of Palmer amaranth have become resistant to glyphosate, however, and growers are turning to options such as dicamba to combat this nuisance. Dicamba is an herbicide that selectively kills broad-leafed weeds (as opposed to grass family plants) and is commonly used in conjunction with other herbicides, such as glyphosate. One of the major disadvantages of dicamba compared to glyphosate is that it is much more “volatile,” meaning it easily becomes airborne and drifts away from where it is applied. Historically, dicamba has been used in agriculture primarily as a pre-emergent, since it could not be applied directly to crop plants, but last spring farmers began planting Monsanto’s new soybeans on about 1 million acres in the US, and spraying their fields with dicamba, which drifted on the wind, damaging non-resistant soybeans on other farmers’ fields. It’s no secret that vegetable and specialty crop farmers are concerned about the introduction of the new technology. Many major high-value Georgia vegetable crops, as well as major row crops not resistant to an auxin, are highly sensitive to these herbicides.“If you look at our farmgate value and look at Georgia’s agronomic crops versus our specialty crops, and you look at when they’re grown and where they’re grown, I think we have more potential conflict for potential drift problems than anywhere else on the planet,” Culpepper noted. Vantage Southeast now carries Raven Sidekick Pro and Hawkeye Nozzle Control, both of which are proven to drastically decrease volatility when applying herbicides such as dicamba. And major chemical companies are stepping in to ease some of the financial burden for new equipment purchases. Learn more inside.

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Planting the Seeds for Success

For example, a wooden fence post rots in the top 6-8 inches because oxygen and water infiltrate the top layer of soil and allow microbe populations to sustain themselves and break down the wood. In the same way, water pools in tire tracks of a planter after a spring rain because the soil has been compressed and pore structure reduced.

The Problems:

SINGULATION, SPACING & POPULATION The Big Three: Sunlight, Water, Nutrients

The life cycle of the farm starts over every spring as fields are prepared and seeds begin to go into the ground. The identification of key planting issues now can greatly impact your yield at the end of the growing season.

EMERGENCE Just getting every plant to emerge isn’t good enough to get every plant to achieve its potential. These plants are competing for the same resources of sunlight, water, and nutrients as their larger neighbors, but they simply can’t keep up and their size is stunted or lost completely. The ultimate goal is uniform emergence, and the first ingredient to uniform emergence is sufficient and uniform moisture. To encourage uniform emergence, seeds must be 100% encapsulated in warm, moist soil to assure that the transfer of heat and moisture from the soil into every seed occurs simultaneously. A seed that is 80% encapsulated in warm, moist soil will emerge at a different time than a seed that is 100% encapsulated in the same environment. This difference can cost the grower through un-even emergence. Firming a seed to the bottom of the trench creates more consistent depth which leads to a more consistent environment and more uniform emergence.

COMPACTION Soil structure has a direct relationship with the amount of water and oxygen that can be held in a soil profile, and influences the amount of possible microbial activity. Soil makeup and the tillage history of a field are the major players in a soil's pore structure. Soil is complex and composed of many parts: mineral, air, water, and organic matter. The organic matter makes up only a few tiny percent of the total soil volume, but it has a tremendous influence on the ability of a soil to produce a big crop. Soil organic matter has a big impact in the early days of a plant’s life and every day after until harvest. It positively impacts nutrient-supplying capability, cation exchange capacity, water holding capacity, soil structure, biological activity, and erosion prevention. Traffic patterns and row unit down pressure are also key factors in macro pore and micro pore structure. Soils that are compacted reduce soil particle size and collapse macro pore structure to micro pore structure. This reduction in air space between soil particles will restrict root size, water uptake, and oxygen content in that area thus reducing microbial activity. This creates a more adverse environment for root growth which limits nutrient uptake.

Every plant stand has a greatest limiting factor to furthering yield potential. The three main elemets are sunlight interception on the leaf, water availability, and nutrient uptake. All three of these elements are related to each other. Sunlight is the force that draws water out of a field in two different ways: evaporation and transpiration. Evaporation: Sunlight that hits the ground causes water to leave through the air instead of through the plant and is a wasted resource. Transpiration: Sunlight that contacts the leaf surface will draw moisture through it. This pull is the action that draws water up through the stalk via the root system, carrying the nutrients needed by the plant. A grower's end goal is to maximize the amount of water pulled from the field through transpiration, to carry nutrients and cool the plant while minimizing water loss due to evaporation. This is achieved by pinpointing the optimal population in a picket-fence stand.


The Solutions: Planting seed in the right place and at the correct depth is crucial for a successful yield and return on investment. Precision planting assures seed placement exactly where you want it while saving money by avoiding where you don’t.

Precision Planting Keeton Seed Firmer Seeds don’t always land right in the bottom of the trench where they belong. But, with its unique, in-the-trench design, the Keeton Seed Firmer is the only thing that gently firms those seeds to the bottom of the V. So the depth is even. The seed-to-soil contact is correct. The germination is uniform. The yield is optimum. There’s a Firmer for virtually every planter or drill, with single or dual applicator tubes. Put one on each of your row units and watch your seeds do their very best.

Precision Planting vSet

Control volatile herbicides such as dicamba with the right equipment: Raven Sidekick Pro Direct Injection The Sidekick Pro™ direct injection system leads the industry and sets a new standard for chemical applications of every type. You can utilize Rinse Assist to automatically flush the pump quickly and thoroughly. Closed, automatic calibration makes it safe for the operator and the environment. With Sidekick Pro, you get more for your inputs when applying costly herbicides, insecticides, liquid fertilizer and nitrogen stabilizer.

Get higher accuracy and higher yield to make constant meter tweaks a thing of the past. Improved singulation and better flexibility are in your grasp. vSet brings a relentless singulator that has five floating steel lobes to ensure one seed per hole, with all kinds of seeds. And with a flat disk, you get consistent seed release, every time.

Precision Planting eSet The new standard for seeding accuracy and flexibility, you can space precisely and harvest more by dropping a single seed down the center, every time. It's simple ingenuity that other meters just don't have. Plus, you can handle any seed size or shape without adjustment.

Precision Planting vDrive vDrive is a custom planter on each row. Whatever you need and ask of that row happens. Period. Season one, you have the capabilities to do your best planting, plus a meter and drive setup that has staying power for the seasons ahead.

Precision Planting Delta Force Each row has unique depth control. From flat fields, to varied terrain, and across soil types. DeltaForce is a unique solution to down force that has features and performance no one else offers. When you control down force, you avoid shallow-planted seeds and you avoid root compaction. Simply put, you increase your yield.

Precision Planting WaveVision To get accurate counts of the seeds you’re planting, you rely on your seed tube sensors. But OEM optical sensors aren’t very reliable in dusty conditions or near tires that are kicking up debris. WaveVision sensors and seed tubes don’t depend on optics. They don’t see seeds, they detect mass, using high-frequency sensors. They can tell the difference between seeds and dust or debris, and count only the seeds. You get accurate counts, so you can plant what you plan. Your yield improves.

Learn more about these products at Vantage-Southeast.com.

Raven Hawkeye Nozzle Control system The Hawkeye Nozzle Control System is ultra-precise. This pressure based product control system allows for precise sprayer application in a variety of conditions, getting the most out of every nozzle in the field. Each nozzle is controlled by its own individual pulsing PWM valve giving you a consistent spray pattern across the boom as speed and conditions change. Nozzle-by-nozzle turn compensation minimizes misapplication and virtual sections provide more control and higher ROI than traditional shut-off systems. The Hawkeye system is simple to install and calibrate, and upgrades are done via software, eliminating any need to remove and reinstall hardware components. With Hawkeye HD, users can utilize individual nozzle on/off to reduce costly skips or overlaps across the width of the boom.


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It is our mission at Vantage Southeast to provide progressive-minded customers a complete solution of precision agriculture with superior products and a professional staff to help inspire, educate and provide first class service and support.

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$1 Back Per Acre BASF COST SHARE PROGRAM Grower reimbursement programs for equipment, such as the Raven Sidekick Pro Direct Injection system and the Hawkeye Nozzel Control system, may be available from chemical companies for the use of certain herbicides. One program, offered by BASF, offers growers a reimbursement of equipment cost up to $1 per acre, based on use rates over the course of up to three years with a maximum total reimbursement equal to the original purchase of the equipment. Equipment invoices submitted for reimbursement must have been purchased within the last 12 months. Valid reimbursement expenses include all brands of accessories, cables, plumbing, pumps and metering devices, screens, software and installation labor. Aftermarket/Dealer installed OEM/DIY expenses are also eligible. While a maximum single entry expense submission cannot exceed $10,000, growers may have multiple equipment purchases exceeding $10,000. The BASF program runs through September 30, 2017, and is intended to encourage use of their Engenia herbicide on cotton and/or soybeans, in-furrow applications of Manticor LFR fungicide/insecticide and/or Xanthion in-furrow fungicide. If you do not use BASF, you may want to check with your chemical supplier to see if they offer a similar program.

COME SEE US AT THESE UPCOMING SHOWS: Florida Strawberry Growers Agritech Trade Show | Plant City, FL | April 18-19 Sunbelt Ag Expo Field Day | Moultrie, GA | July 13 Southern Peanut Growers Conference | Miramar Beach, FL | July 20-22

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PRECISION AG CONSULTANTS Central & South Georgia Lance Childers | 855. 601.4477 SW Georgia, SE Alabama, NW Florida Cody Tabb | 855.602.4477 East Georgia Jesse Neidlinger | 855.604.4477 Central & South Florida Ken Lodge | 855.605.4477 Reach us anytime at sales@vantage-se.com 877.585.4GPS

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Vantage Southease newsletter Spring 2017  
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