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Critical Weed-Free Periods By Crop

If weeds can be kept out of the crop during the critical early stages of growth, you should be able to minimize losses (from weed competition) to under 5%. Even late emerging weeds will have difficulty overtaking the crop due its competitive advantage of later growth stage. Below are the critical weed-free periods by crop:

1) Spring cereals –one to three leaf stages

2) Winter cereals –the period between 500 and 1000 growing degree days with a base temperature set at zero degrees

3) Canola and oilseeds –from emergence to the six-leaf stage

4) Pulses –the period varies by crop type, from the second and third node through to early majority. This is why residual weed management is so popular for these crops

5) Forage crops –four to six weeks after planting in the year of establishment

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