Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School



Since the discovery of the wood killing properties of 2, 4-di-chlorophenoxyacetic acid, the use of chemical methods to control weeds has often become a routine farm operation. The utilization of chemical wood controls in farming has at times gone beyond the recommendations for safety. Safe use of these chemicals is not meant to apply only to the safety of the user himself but also to the safety of the crop to which the chemical is being applied. Damage to crops cannot always be measured in bushels per acre; on some occasions, damage to a crop can cause considerable loss of income by rendering it unfit to use for seeding purposes. The idea for the study reported in this paper was conceived after the Agronomy Seed Laboratory at South Dakota State College received, in 1952, several flax samples that had a large number of abnormal seedlings when the tests for germination were made. Inquiry by letter of the owners of the seed revealed the fact that the fields of most of those farm operators who replied had been sprayed with 2, 4-D shortly before harvest led to the start of this investigation. Personal correspondence with R.S. Dunham, Agronomist, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, Minnesota regarding 2,4-D injury to flax seed led to the belief that little or no experimental spraying work has been done on flax at a nearly mature stage of growth. Mr. Dunham attributed the abnormalities, in a sample sent to him from the Agronomy Seed Laboratory, to the mechanical injury of the flax seed cost.

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South Dakota State University


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