A Comprehensive Approach To Control Weeds in Organic Peanut Systems in the Southeast

This project will examine the effectiveness of an integrated weed control system in Certified Organic peanut production utilizing regular mechanical cultivation and Eugenol, a broad spectrum herbicide derived from cloves and approved for Certified Organic production in a commercial formulation as Weed Slayer. The project will be conducted with four Certified Organic farmers at four locations in Southwest Georgia: (1) two loamy/clayey farms, (2) two sandy farms. Each site will have two fields planted approximately 2-3 weeks apart within the optimum planting window (May/June) to measure weed pressures and yield. Each farm will begin use of a tine weeder within 5-7 days after planting, with 5-7 total passes, followed by 2-3 passes with sweeps until the peanut plants’ canopies extend across the rows. As applications of Eugenol become necessary due to weather events and potentially poor generation, farmers will test its efficacy in combination with mechanical production in the real environment of working farms. Data for all weed control activities will be collected throughout the year, and weed populations at each farm will be measured after approximately eight weeks of control and again before harvest. All information will be compiled and shared to offer best agronomic practices and actual economic considerations to other producers.