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Weed Scientist

 

Overview

Weed scientists play an important role in managing vegetation. This may include identifying weeds and learning how to combat them or determining how herbicides interact with plants. 

 

weed scientist

 

What responsibilities will I have?

  • Conduct research to diagnose problems in the field or establish weed management systems for private crop management or consulting companies
  • Identify weeds for farmers, golf courses, and homeowners
  • Offer suggestions on weed control methods to landowners both through chemicals, cover crops and mechanical means
  • Develops weed control products
  • Recommend or sell weed control products
  • Work to find chemical formulations that are effective in killing resistant weeds
  • Study environmental and human health impact of chemicals that could be used
  • Plant crop trials both in fields and greenhouses to use for research
  • Oversee lab staff/ field laborers
  • Organize and analyze research data
  • Submit research to journals and scholarly papers
  • Present presentations at conferences and to farmers on research findings and new techniques and formulations
  • Provide insight to government agencies for policy development

 

What education and training is required?

A master’s or PhD in weed science, ecology, plant ecology, plant physiology, agronomy or soil science.

 

To pursue a career as a Weed Scientist:

The following high school courses are recommended:  agricultural education, a focus on sciences such as biology, chemistry, environmental science, computer classes and public speaking.    

 

Where can I work?

Weed scientist can work for universities and extension as well as agricultural chemical companies, nonprofits, private research companies and as a consultant.

 

Future Job Market/Outlook

The job outlook for weed scientist will be great over the next five years. 

 

Suggested Professional Organizations and Associations

  • Weed Science Society of America
  • American Society of Agronomy
  • International Weed Science Society