However, management practices that reduce the herbicide’s efficacy to control weeds, including glyohosate resistant Palmer pigweed, may potentially hasten the development of resistance. 

“FiberMax and Stoneville LibertyLink varieties are bred with tolerance to full labeled rates of Liberty herbicide to increase weed control, help avoid escapes and steward the LibertyLink technology,” says Steve  Nichols, U.S. agronomic manager for seed and technology for Bayer CropScience, the company that markets the LibertyLink trait.

 “It is crucial that growers follow best management practices to preserve the long-term viability of Liberty herbicide as a sustainable tool for effective weed control,” Nichols says.

In cotton, Bayer offers several FiberMax and Stoneville cottonseed varieties containing LibertyLink technology.

“We encourage growers to always read and follow label recommendations and use best management practices,” Nichols says.

“With Liberty herbicide, that includes practices such as making applications at proper timings based on weed size, following suggested labeled rates, using optimum spray volumes, use of tank-mix partners when warranted, and the use of residual herbicides for a complete weed control program. 

“Growers who plant FiberMax and Stoneville varieties with the LibertyLink trait and use labeled rates of Liberty herbicide along with best management practices for weed control can enhance the effectiveness of their weed control program and help minimize the risk of resistance development,” Nichols explains.

“In the long-run, the grower can be successful in effectively controlling weeds and producing a profitable cotton crop,” he adds.

“If growers use LibertyLink trait technology and Liberty herbicide in the way it was developed to be used, they can go in at the right time and spray when the weed size indicates it’s time to spray — they don’t have to wait for their crop to get to a certain size to spray.

“If the weeds get away a little bit and they need to apply Dual or other tank-mixes, they can do that without any fear of damaging their cotton crop.

“If you are managing to avoid injuring your crop, you are not likely doing the best job you could be doing of controlling weeds and maintaining clean fields.

“With LibertyLink technology, which offers full tolerance to Liberty herbicide, growers can better manage their crop and more effectively control weeds,” Nichols says.

He explains that LibertyLink trait technology is going to be included in many future cotton varieties for years to come.