Flue-cured tobacco is sensitive to foliar and soil residues of off-target synthetic auxin drift. Aminocyclopyrachlor is a newly developed synthetic auxin herbicide that may be used in right-of-way applications for broadleaf weed and brush control. Aminocyclopyrachlor is considered a reduced-risk alternative in rights-of-way compared with similar compounds because of its low application rate and volatility risk. However, no research is available on the response of field-grown, flue-cured tobacco to aminocyclopyrachlor drift exposure. Research was conducted in 2009 and 2010 at the Border Belt Tobacco Research Station in Whiteville, NC, to determine the response of ‘NC 71’ flue-cured tobacco to five simulated drift rates of aminocyclopyrachlor (0.31, 1.6, 3.1, 15.7, and 31.4 g ae ha−1) and one aminopyralid (6.1 g ae ha−1) simulated drift rates applied pretransplant incorporated, pretransplant unincorporated, 3 wk after transplant, and 6 wk after transplant. All herbicide rates and application timings caused significant visual tobacco injury, ranging from slight to severe with increasing herbicide drift rates. Tobacco plant heights and fresh weights were reduced at all application timings receiving ≥ 15.7 g ha−1 aminocyclopyrachlor and the comparative aminopyralid rate.
Nomenclature: Aminocyclopyrachlor, 6-amino-5-chloro-2-cyclopropyl-4-pyrimidine-carboxylic acid; aminopyralid 4-amino-3,6-dichloro-2-pyridinecarboxylic acid; tobacco, Nicotiana tabacum L. ‘NC-71’.