Metribuzin-tolerance Screening of Selected Soybean Cultivars

Tom Eubank, Research/Extension Weed Scientist
By Tom Eubank, Research/Extension Weed Scientist March 1, 2012 09:25

As glyphosate-resistant weeds continue to proliferate across the Midsouth, many producers have taken a renewed interest in residual herbicides for the control of problem weeds such as Italian ryegrass and Palmer amaranth. For a number of years, one of the mainstay residual herbicides in soybean weed control systems was metribuzin (Sencor/Lexone). Metribuzin provides residual control of a number broadleaf species and is also an effective tool in burndown combinations with paraquat and glufosinate. It is especially effective as a soil-applied residual when combined with other herbicide modes-of-action (MOA) such as in the products Boundary, Authority MTX, Canopy, Matador and others. Metribuzin is a PSII inhibitor (Group 5) which offers a unique MOA in soybean and one that may help reduce the potential evolution of herbicide resistance to the more commonly used PPO-inhibiting herbicides (Group 14) such as Flexstar and Valor.

One of the drawbacks to metribuzin use is the sensitivity of some soybean varieties to this herbicide. Soil types, organic matter, rainfall, product use rate, among others can all play a role in soybean sensitivity to metribuzin. Previous research at Mississippi State University has shown that metribuzin sensitivity of soybean can be quantified through greenhouse screenings but this research has not been conducted in the last several years. Due to the need of alternative herbicide options, a research project conducted by Mississippi State University and the University of Arkansas screened some of the modern germplasms available to producers for metribuzin tolerance. The link below will take you to the results of this study. Soybean tolerance to metribuzin is broken down into slight (1-3), moderate (4-6), severe (7-9) and death (10). It should be noted that the majority of varieties exhibited acceptable tolerance to metribuzin (slight-moderate) but there were a few varieties that were very sensitive to metribuzin and extreme caution or alternative weed control options should be explored with these varieties. While this list is not exhaustive, it will help give an idea of the sensitivity of some modern day cultivars. Whether or not the soybean variety you intend to plant is listed, prudence and following label recommendations should still be used with any herbicide.



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Tom Eubank, Research/Extension Weed Scientist
By Tom Eubank, Research/Extension Weed Scientist March 1, 2012 09:25
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  1. Jim Phillips March 3, 08:10

    What rate of Sencor was used in the sensitivity tests? Any correlation to growing medium in the greenhouse to soil types or the rates used to soiltypes?

    Extremely unteresting and useful series of articles. Thanks

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    • Tom Eubank Author March 8, 22:53

      Mississippi uses a modified hydroponic screening method as developed by Barrentine which uses an equivalent field rate 0.25 lbs ai/acre.
      Arkansas uses soil and a rate of 0.375 lbs ai/acre.
      The big difference between our two systems is that Miss. are “swimming” in a metribuzin solution and they would all die at a higher use rate and you would not see any differences. Arkansas, by using soil, has to use a higher rate to be able to see differences because the root zone may not necessarily be saturated with metribuzin at all times and then there is the issue of % OM, clay content, etc.
      We are currently working together to try and develop a materials and methods that will suit both our needs and combine our data annually.

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