Herbicide breakdown is driven by a range of microbial processes. What does this look like in intensive cropping systems?
Dr Mick Rose from NSW Department of Primary Industries (now Southern Cross University) and his team have been investigating the breakdown of different herbicides across a range of soil types and rainfall zones.
During the fallow or in-crop season, there are often several applications of herbicide, and some residues may still be present on or near the soil surface when it is time to plant the next crop. Particularly in dry years, residues may even carry over from the crop prior to the fallow.
Mick will outline the effect these residues may have on soil microbial activity and on the establishment and growth of crops following the fallow, even after the plant back period.