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Dicamba FAQ

U.S. EPA Cancellation Order for Dicamba Products Frequently Asked Questions

 

Answers to frequently asked questions regarding dicamba use and label requirements.

 

  1. Do I need to take dicamba-specific training?
    Prior to applying any of the four dicamba products labeled for in-crop use in soybean and cotton (Engenia, Xtendimax, FeXapan, and Tavium) in the 2020 growing season, a certified applicator must complete dicamba specific training. This training requirement applies to applications made to soybeans (including use in burn-down) and to applications on any other crops listed on these product labels. Dicamba-specific training is required prior to applying these products in the 2020 growing season and each growing season thereafter.  If you received dicamba-specific training last year, you must still complete the training again in 2020.

     

  2. What does dicamba training cover?

    The training covers the product label requirements, recordkeeping requirements, weed management practices, buffer requirements and protection of sensitive crops, sensitive areas, and endangered species, spray drift management, chemistry, mixing and handling, window of application, equipment preparation and special considerations.

     

  3. Do I need to complete training before I purchase these products?
    Certified applicators (both private and commercial) do not need to complete training to purchase the products, but you must complete training before applying the products.

  4.  How do I prove completion of dicamba-specific training?
    Once the certified applicator successfully completes the on-line training, a certificate will be automatically generated. Per label requirements, applicators are required to retain certificates of training completion. If you have taken a dicamba-specific training and did not receive a certificate by email, or cannot locate the email, please contact the company hosting the training for that record or contact the Illinois Fertilizer & Chemical Association at (309) 826-3236 and they can assist you.
      
  5. What type of dicamba training will be accepted in Illinois?
    The registrant-provided in-person training, webinars, and online training tutorials hosted by BASF, Bayer, Corteva and Syngenta are all accepted forms of dicamba specific training of the products. Any of the on-line training programs listed below can be utilized to provide certification for using dicamba in 2020. 
      NOTE: An applicator only needs to attend one of the training sessions provided by any of the manufacturers, regardless of which of the four dicamba products they apply.

     

  6.  If I completed a dicamba-specific training session in another state will it be accepted in Illinois?
    Yes.  Any dicamba training which is approved by the state in which the training is conducted will be considered acceptable training in Illinois.  
     
  7.  Can a non-certified individual or a licensed operator use dicamba under the supervision of a certified applicator?
    No. The label directions for dicamba products require certification, licensing and safety training of all individuals using these products. Direct supervision that is permitted for some other RUPs is not allowed for these products.

  8.  What are the additional label restrictions added by the Illinois Department of Agriculture for dicamba product use to prevent off-target damage?
    The cutoff date for dicamba application is June 20, 2020.   Dicamba applications also cannot be made if the air temperature at the field at the time of application is over 85 degrees Fahrenheit or if the National Weather Service's forecasted high temperature for the nearest available location for the day of application exceeds 85 degrees Fahrenheit.
     
  9.  The Illinois Special Local Needs labels for the four dicamba products require that I check the National Weather Service (NWS) website(www.weather.gov) to ensure that the forecast high temperature for the proposed date of application will not exceed 85 degrees.  How soon before the application should I check the forecast?
    In order to obtain the most accurate forecast, IDOA requires consultation of www.weather.gov no earlier than one calendar day prior to the date of application. IDOA recommends that the applicator print a copy of the forecast to include with the application records. The forecast is obtained by entering the zip code of the nearest town to the proposed field of application.   

    Examples:
    • On the day of application, the forecasted high temperature for the day per the NWS website is 84 degrees and the air temperature at the time of application is measured (as required by the product label) by the applicator to be 83 degrees. The application may proceed.
    • The high temperature for the proposed application date per NWS website is forecasted to be 87 degrees at 5 p.m. The applicator measures the air temperature at the field at 10 a.m. to be 76 degrees. This is a DO NOT APPLY situation because the forecast high for the day of application exceeds 85 degrees.
    • The high temperature for the proposed application date per NWS website is forecasted to be 83 degrees at 5 p.m. The applicator measures the air temperature at the field at 2 p.m. to be 86 degrees. This is a DO NOT APPLY situation because the air temperature at the time of application exceeds 85 degrees.

     

  10. What is the cut-off date for application of dicamba in Illinois?
    The Illinois Department of Agriculture included language in the 2020 Special Local Needs Labels stating, "DO NOT apply this product after June 20, 2020." 

    NOTE:  The label also states that dicamba can only be applied within 45 days of the planting date of the soybeans or up to and including the R1 growth stage.  Therefore, the cut-off date is whichever of these dates is reached first.  See more in question 13 below. 

     
  11.  The label requires consulting a sensitive crop registry prior to application. How do I know if a sensitive crop is located near or around fields of application?
    Prior to application, the applicator must consult the FieldWatch sensitive crop registry at https://www.fieldwatch.com and comply with all associated record keeping label requirements.

                            
  12. The Illinois Special Local Needs labels for the four dicamba products also require that I check the DriftWatch registry for the presence of nearby sensitive crops or sites. Can I also use that site to check for the presence of nearby non-DT soybeans?
    Yes.  Effective January 1, 2019, a new FieldWatch feature called CropCheck allows growers to map row crops like soybeans, cotton, and corn that may be sensitive to some nearby pesticide applications. You can access CropCheck through www.driftwatch.org.  Please be advised that checking CropCheck for nearby non-DT row crops does not eliminate the requirement for the applicator to ensure those neighboring crops are dicamba-tolerant before application. 
     
  13.  Are there any application timing restrictions on the use of these dicamba-containing products?
    Yes. The federally-approved labels state that these products may be applied pre-plant, at-planting, pre-emergence, and post-emergence (in-crop) in dicamba-tolerant soybeans. However, for postemergence use, the labels prohibit application: 1) later than 45 days after planting, 2) after the R1 growth stage, or 3) after June 20, 2020 (as stated in the Illinois Special Local Needs Label), whichever of the three comes first.  Additionally, applications are permitted only during the period one hour after sunrise through two hours before sunset.       
     
  14.  Who may apply dicamba-containing products?
    Only certified applicators may apply dicamba. Those working under the supervision of a certified applicator may not make applications.    
     
  15. How should records of dicamba applications be kept and how long should they be retained?
    The federal labels require 22 elements to be kept for every individual application. Records must be generated within 72 hours after application and a record must be kept for every individual application. Although not required, each registrant has sample forms available that can be used for assistance in recordkeeping. US EPA requires record retention for 2 years.  
     
  16.  The Illinois Special Needs Labels state "Maintain the label-specified downwind buffer between the last treated row and the nearest downfield edge of any Illinois Nature Preserves Commission (INPC) site. What are Illinois Nature Preserves Commission sites and how do I find where they are located within the State?
    The INPC assists private and public landowners in protecting high quality natural areas and habitats of state-listed species through dedication or registration of such lands into the Illinois Nature Preserves System. These areas are afforded a high level of ecological protection pursuant to the Illinois Natural Areas Preservation Act. INPC site locations are available here.

    Note: The mapping tool on the site includes several layers in addition to the INPC sites, including Illinois threatened and endangered species, Illinois natural areas inventory sites and IDNR owned and managed properties. Applicators can access the specific INPC site layer for information in seeking to comply with the dicamba labels.

     
  17. Can I apply dicamba after June 20 if DT soybeans are still in vegetative stage?
    The Illinois Section 24(c) special local need label prohibits application after June 20 regardless of soybeans growth stage.

  18.  Can I spray dicamba products if the wind is blowing in the direction of sensitive crop species or areas?
    No. Dicamba application CANNOT occur if the wind is blowing in the direction of sensitive crops, which includes residential areas. 

  19.  Can I spray dicamba if the field is in a county listed as having endangered species? 
    Yes.  HOWEVER, the applicator must establish a 57-foot omnidirectional buffer, in addition to the downwind buffer, if they apply dicamba in a USEPA designated dicamba-endangered species county.  The omnidirectional buffer must be documented in the record of application.  The USEPA website that designates endangered species counties for dicamba application is available here:  https://www.epa.gov/endangered-species/bulletins-live-two-view-bulletins.  There are 29 counties in Illinois that are required to establish the 57-foot omnidirectional buffer. 

     
  20.  Per label requirements, dicamba applications can only be made one hour after sunrise and two hours before sunset. How do I know the sunrise and sunset times if it is cloudy on the day of dicamba application?
    Applicators are encouraged to visit the National Weather Service website to verify the times of sunrise and sunset on that calendar day.