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2006 Season Review


We had a warm April, a cold May and then it turned off hot and dry. We had irrigation going and didn’t think it was ever going to rain. But at the end of July, first of August, we had three or four timely rains. Everything comes back to weather. Our potentially good crop all has to do with the way the rains fell.

We address nematodes on our lighter soils, and this year we have used a significant amount of Avicta Complete Pak, a seed treatment that includes a nematicide, a fungicide and an insecticide. It’s good technology. We’re looking forward to trying to measure it and get a handle on how effective it has been this season. I like the fact that we can put a nematicide on the seed at planting.


Victor Roth
Roth Farm Service
Malden, Mo. 

• B.S. degree in Agriculture – University of Missouri
• Member of NAICC
• Certified Crop Advisor – CCA
• Enjoys hunting, hunting, hunting

In this Q&A interview, Roth talks about the challenges
he faces and the rewards he realizes as a consultant in
today’s new ag environment.

What services do you offer and how do they contribute to your farmer client’s profitability?

Insect pest management is the No.1 service that I
offer, followed by soil sampling and fertilizer recommendations. In-season, I also provide PGR management, irrigation and defoliation recommendations on an as-needed basis depending on the farmer. As far as the main inputs that I am concerned with – fertilizer and insecticides – my goal is to maximize yield and minimize cost. Not always do we make the highest yield, but I like for my growers to always make a profit at the end of the season. If we make a profit, we’ll farm again next year.

What’s your approach to processing technology/ product information that you eventually pass on to
the farmer?

We spend at least eight months out of the year preparing
for these intense four months. I try to take new technology
or a new product and determine if it will help my farmers
make a profit and whether it has a place on their farms. I
like to see the technology or product tried in a research
environment, but I realize that technology changes so fast
that we can’t always wait three or four years for hard
research. So I attend meetings, read and talk to others who
have used the new technology or products. Then I take
what I’ve learned to the grower.

In your career, what’s been the biggest change for crop consultants?

I’ve been a consultant for 32 crops and have seen so many changes. Recently I had three specific pests in the field that had to be controlled: bollworms, budworms and plant bugs. Some of the chemistries we had used before used to contain all those pests. Now we use different chemistries for each one. Then there are growth regulators. Back when we raised ST 213 and were trying to stop that cotton at mid-season, farmers said “Gosh, I wish we could put something on it to slow it down.” Now we have it. With all of that, plus varieties and management, we’ve been able to increase our yields and improve our consistency.

What has been the most rewarding part of your profession?

I like the whole season from the seedling cotton coming up to pulling up in my pick-up truck and seeing my grower out there with his six-row picker ready to pull into the field. I have wonderful growers. I also enjoy the other consultants I work with. But I really appreciate my wife Rhonda. She has cared for me and supported me for 32 years and has tolerated a lot of long hours.



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