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If you’d spent decades conducting seed-treatment experiments like researchers Ray Knake and Tristan Mueller have, you might see seed treatments in a new light forever. You’d no more want to miss insuring early seedling health than you’d skip your children’s immunizations.
Seed treatment is all about reducing risk, especially in the first 72 hours of a plant’s life. And farmer use is proof. Aided by newer systemic fungicides and insecticides, their global sales more than tripled from $700 million in 1997 to $2.25 billion in 2010, and they’re estimated to reach $3.4 billion in 2016.
New treatments for SCN and rhizoctonia
A new nematicide with season-long activity against SCN will be added to last year’s new Vibrance fungicide against rhizoctonia as part of Syngenta’s new triple pest protection seed treatment in 2014, with the introduction of Clariva Complete Beans nematicide/insecticide/fungicide.
“Soybean growers in the Midwest have told us their No. 1 problem is controlling cyst nematode, and that’s what has been missing in seed treatments,” says Wouter Berkhout, soybean product lead at Syngenta Seedcare. Vibrance was introduced for soybeans in 2013 (coming for corn in 2015).
DuPont Pioneer will continue to offer growers the same Pioneer Premium Seed Treatment program for 2014 planting as it did in 2013 in both its corn and soybean seed products. That includes EverGol Energy fungicide, (introduced in 2013) with enhanced protection against a broad spectrum of early-season diseases including Rhizoctonia, Fusarium and Pythium.
For more information from several major seed companies, check out Syngenta, Pioneer and Monsanto. Also check out a new in-depth report just released by CropLife America called “The Role of Seed Treatment in Modern U.S. Crop Production” and “The Guide to Seed Treatment Stewardship.”