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Farmer pairs father’s advice with new technology

Third-generation farmer Chris Porter relies on the lessons his father taught him to care for, grow and nurture his family’s farm in the Missouri Bootheel.


Although his dad passed away in 2007, Porter keeps two pieces of advice his dad shared with him top of mind:

  • Any job worth doing is worth doing right.

  • Don’t ask an employee to do anything you wouldn’t do yourself.

“I farm because my dad and my granddad farmed,” Porter says. “I always wanted to be a farmer like my dad. That’s what I’ve always said growing up. It’s what I would always write on my school paper when the teacher asked what I wanted to be. It’s what I know and is my way of life.”

Porter looks at new technologies and farming practices, such as minimum tillage and cover crops, to continue building his family’s farming legacy. When it came to seed selection and weed control, Porter evaluated the options and decided to plant PhytoGen® cottonseed with the Enlist cotton trait. This allowed him to use Enlist herbicides for weed control.

The great vigor of PhytoGen cottonseed enticed Porter to plant three varieties this year. He calls the yield potential amazing.

“I chose PhytoGen because of how well it performs. It’s almost like why wouldn’t you try this?” Porter says. “Enlist was a bonus that I knew I could use to help control the pigweed.”

Porter, like many others in his area, considers pigweed to be one of the biggest problems he battles each year. Johnsongrass, cocklebur and wild cotton also have begun to reappear around field edges.

“We are relying on preemergents more and more,” Porter says. “We try to start as clean as possible with our burndown program. We want to plant into a field where nothing will inhibit the crop.”

After the preemergence application, Porter tank-mixed Enlist One herbicide with Warrant herbicide for additional broadleaf and grass control. Approximately 20 days after that application, Porter sprayed another residual followed by a second tank-mix application of Enlist One and glufosinate.

“Seeing Enlist One work really draws me to it more,” Porter says. “You have to be mindful of how big the weeds are, but it can control pigweed with timely applications.”

Having clean, weed-free fields gives Porter a sense of pride.

“You can say ‘I beat the pigweed this year,’” he says. He knows pigweed is relentless and will be a challenge again next year. But he’s taking weed control decisions a year at a time. “We want to keep the fields clean because it can become a disaster really quick.”

Porter followed the label requirements and used best management practices to make on-target applications in 2018. He placed Flag the Technology markers for Enlist in his fields, making the fields of PhytoGen varieties with the Enlist trait easier for his applicator to identify and avoid misapplications.


Porter also makes time to talk with his neighbors. He lets them know when he is spraying and encourages his neighbors to talk with him if they have questions.

“Our spray rig operator is as careful as possible. He is a good steward. We will stop if the wind direction changes,” Porter says. “We will slow down to get good coverage. It goes back to Dad’s advice of doing the job right the first time.”

Porter will pass those wise words of advice to his young son and daughter, the farm’s fourth generation.

“My son says the same thing I did growing up: ‘I want to be a farmer like my daddy,’” Porter says with a big smile. 

See more about farmers’ experiences with the Enlist weed control system at ExperiencingEnlist.com. Follow us on Twitter at @EnlistOnline and visit our YouTube channel.

™®Trademarks of Dow AgroSciences, DuPont or Pioneer, and their affiliated companies or their respective owners. ®PhytoGen and the PhytoGen Logo are trademarks of PhytoGen Seed Company, LLC. PhytoGen Seed Company is a joint venture between Mycogen Corporation, an affiliate of Dow AgroSciences LLC, and the J.G. Boswell Company. The Enlist weed control system is owned and developed by Dow AgroSciences LLC. Enlist Duo® and Enlist One herbicides are not yet registered for use in all states or counties. Contact your state pesticide regulatory agency to determine if a product is registered for sale or use in your area. Enlist Duo and Enlist One herbicides are the only 2,4-D product authorized for use with Enlist crops. Consult Enlist herbicide labels for weed species controlled. Always read and follow label directions. ©2019 Dow AgroSciences LLC

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