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An Update from the Agronomist

Jun 10, 2020

Waterhemp grows much quicker than Redroot pigweed, and requires action to be taken on the field within days of finding 1-2” plants like the ones pictured here. Both weeds can be tough to kill since they have resistance to glyphosate and other chemistries, however the speed of which each grows and the amount of growing points on a waterhemp vs a redroot pigweed can change the management strategy drastically. Pictured are a waterhemp plant and a redroot pigweed plant right next to each other. Can you identify which is which? 

The waterhemp plant has a shinier brighter green appearance vs. the darker duller green of the redroot pigweed. Typically the leaves of waterhemp plant are narrower vs. redroot pigweeds are more oblong and some are almost circular. If all of these ID factors fail, a more fool proof method can be used, but it takes a trained eye. Hold the plant up and see if you can see tiny hairs on the stem, especially up near the apical meristem of the shoot (the very tip of the plant). If there is no hairs it is likely a waterhemp plant. If it has hairs it is likely a redroot pigweed. Look closely and the first ID factors will tell you that the plant on the right is a waterhemp and the plant on the left is the redroot pigweed.

Jackson Gregory 
Belgrade Cooperative Agronomist

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