As the area affected by resistant corn rootworm expands, growers look to add new crop protection products to assist with prevention. In 2018, growers faced a disappointing harvest due to a failure of traits designed to control corn rootworm, and a lack of plant protection beyond the initial seed protection.

Traits and seed treatments help to protect the seeds as they germinate and begin to grow. But, rootworms can continue to damage the seedlings as they grow new roots. To add protection, growers use insecticide at planting. However, this effort has shown underwhelming results. Extra equipment can be bulky, expensive and ‘just another thing to go wrong’ while you’re racing to get your seed planted.

Is it even worth adding an insecticide?

A number of growers in Iowa with resistant corn rootworm did field trials with Bifender FC from Vive Crop Protection in 2018. Bifender FC contains bifenthrin, the same active ingredient as Capture® LFR. The difference between the two is that Bifender FC is completely compatible with liquid fertilizer. Bifender FC will not clog your spray nozzles, delivering consistent insect control from one field to another ­– even if there’s a delay due to tough weather.

David Pratt, Commercial Agronomist with Vive Crop Protection, says, “I’ve been involved in field trials for 35 years, mostly with Michigan State University, and I’ve never seen results like this.” In ten trials, growers used Bifender FC mixed with liquid fertilizer in addition to a triple stack hybrid. Nine of the 10 trials were corn after corn and the other was corn following soybeans.

The average yield increase across the trials was 12.4 bu/ac and an ROI of $33.40/ac (based on corn at $3.50/bu and insecticide cost at $10/ac). “If there’s a way to make an additional $33 per acre, why wouldn’t farmers with a high risk of rootworm resistance use it?” says Pratt.

Easy to use, worry-free protection

Bifender FC contains the Allosperse® Delivery System, a nanotechnology shuttle that allows proven products that don’t normally mix well with fertilizer, chemicals, micronutrients or hard water to mix. Pratt says that every grower he’s worked with said that it’s easy to use and it doesn’t cause any problem in the spray tank or spray lines and screens.

Bifender FC is an excellent complement to seed treatment. It is easy to use and doesn’t require additional equipment. When it is mixed with liquid fertilizer, there will be no crystallization, no clogging and no hassle.

 

Originally published March 12, 2019