An improved version of the old reliable Roundup herbicide was launched by Sinochem Philippines on June 26, 2013 at a demo farm at UP Los Baños in Laguna.
This is the Roundup Turboplus which has been registered with the Fertilizer and Pesticide Authority (FPA) for use in corn, banana, mango, vegetables and other crops.
This new formulation is claimed to be more effective and more economical than ITS other counterparts in the market. One reason is that the active ingredient is in the form of potassium salt rather than IPA salt. As such, it has a higher load of the active glyphosate herbicide material. According to Dennis Miciano, Sinochem marketing manager, only a small amount (1.3 liters) is needed to spray one hectare of corn field. It is therefore more economical.
At the same time, Turboplus is more stable than other herbicides and is less affected by changing weather conditions. Turboplus also sticks better on the leaves of the target weeds.
Keeping corn fields weed-free is very important to make the corn plants productive. From the very start, the corn plants should be free from weeds so that they have a fresh start. Weeds could rob the plants of the valuable plant nutrients in the soil. The vines and other weeds could even strangle the young corn plants.
Miciano stressed that Turboplus will not harm the corn plants if these are Bt or Roundup Ready (RR) varieties even if they are sprayed with the new formulation. However, when ordinary varieties are grown, only the weeds should be sprayed with Turboplus.
Miciano said that for Roundup Ready corn, over the top spraying can be done at 15 to 25 days after planting (DAP). However, spraying with Turboplus should be directed to the weeds at 40-45 days after planting.
Herbicides are more effective and cheaper in controlling weeds in the field than manual weeding. They are often used to clear grassy land before planting.
In the rolling hills in Sultan Kudarat, for instance, many corn farmers spray the weedy fields with herbicide. When the grasses have dried up, they plant corn without plowing the soil. They just dibble the seeds together with organic fertilizer. That’s what they call zero tillage system of planting which has its own advantages.
For one, zero tillage makes corn farming cheaper because the farmer does not have to plow the field. Another advantage is that soil erosion is minimized.
Miciano stresses that Roundup Turboplus is very easy to apply. It is added to a sprayer with water and sprayed directly to the target weeds. The user, he said, should always follow the instructions on the label. It should be applied at the right rate, and the timing should also be right. Clean water should be used to ensure effective control of the weeds. Wilting, yellowing and drying up of the entire weeds can be seen starting at five days after application.