While glyphosate resistance continues to monopolize most any discussion of weed control, there are other issues to consider in peanut production, says Eric Protsko, University of Georgia Extension weed scientist.

“Of course we’re spending a lot of time and effort on Palmer amaranth pigweed control for obvious reasons, and in the past couple of years, we’ve made excellent headway in our ability to manage this weed pest,” said Protsko at the 2013 Georgia Peanut Farm Show in Tifton.

“However, we’ve also done quite a bit of work on variety tolerance. Varieties have changed over the years. Just a few years ago, everyone was growing Georgia Green and now we’re not growing it at all.

“My job is to make sure the newer varieties are not any more susceptible to herbicides than others planted in the past.”

And while there’s currently no research or development going on in terms of new herbicides that can be used on peanuts, Protsko is looking at herbicides registered for other crops for their potential fit in Georgia.

“They may or may not ever make it into our recommendations, but if we at the University of Georgia don’t look at it, it probably won’t happen. We can help that process along if a company is interested and there is potential there,” he says.

The key to managing resistant Palmer amaranth pigweed, he says, is to use an integrated approach and not rely solely on herbicides. Use other strategies whenever you can such as tillage, cover crops, irrigation to increase the effectiveness of residual herbicides, planting peanuts in twin rows, and hand-weeding, advises Protsko.

“We’ve got to start clean. Whenever I see a problem, it can usually be traced back to something that wasn’t done properly in the beginning.

“You have to do a good job controlling pigweed at planting and avoid any delays between tillage and planting. Do whatever you can at planting — whether it’s using herbicides or tillage — and start clean.”