John Wallace, Penn State Weed Science
It is a pleasure to introduce myself as the new Weed Management Extension Specialist on the Agronomy Extension Team. My predecessor, professor emeritus Bill Curran, provided excellent leadership in this area for many years. I am excited to carry forward many of the extension and research focus areas that Bill developed and initiate new programs as I learn more about current needs and interests across the state.
I transitioned to this position in September from Cornell University, where I served as the Specialty Crop Systems Specialist with extension responsibilities in weed management. In many ways, I am returning to familiar territory. I was fortunate to spend several years (2014-2017) working with Bill Curran and the Penn State Weed Ecology and Management program as a post-doctoral research associate. During this time, I managed a long-term, organic cropping systems experiment that focused on reduced-tillage practices. I also led research efforts that focused on developing cover cropping strategies to improve management of herbicide-resistant weeds in no-till field crops and developed best management practices for herbicide use when interseeding cover crops in corn.
Managing herbicide-resistant weeds will remain a primary challenge for Pennsylvania crop producers in the coming years. I look forward to working closely with my colleague, Dwight Lingenfelter, and other weed extension specialists in the surrounding region to evaluate new weed control technologies and programs for troublesome herbicide-resistant weeds. We will continue to share our management recommendations at Crop Conferences and Crop Days hosted by our team throughout the state and in annually-updated publications, including the Mid-Atlantic Field Crop Weed Management Guide and Penn State Agronomy Guide.
Over the next few years, I hope to develop extension and research programs that meet the needs of Pennsylvania farmers and agricultural professionals as they continue to adapt to shifts in consumer demand for food products and production practices. There will be a strong need to develop pro-active, weed management programs that prevent development of weed resistance to effective herbicide modes-of-action. There will also be a need to develop weed management tactics that are compatible with innovative cover cropping and conservation-tillage practices that aim to increase environmental sustainability. And finally, there will be a need to help growers who are interested in transitioning to organic production, producing niche crops, or integrating specialty crops to diversify their farming enterprise.
I hope to meet many of you at winter meetings and conferences around the state in the coming months. Learning about your current weed management issues will greatly assist the development of extension and research focus areas that will hopefully help navigate current and future challenges across the Commonwealth. Please feel free to contact me at 814-863-1014 or firstname.lastname@example.org.