Effective weed control may be one of the most important components of a successful farm, but it is also one of the hardest to attain.

Pocket Herb, a software program developed by North Carolina State University, can make herbicide decisions easier. The software runs on Windows on a pocket PC and helps determine the best herbicide for field conditions. The recommendations are based on field and economic parameters entered into the program, such as crop, weed pressure, expected yield and price, and cost of application. It makes recommendations based on which herbicide program would be most economical, not which one would kill 100% of the weeds.

Pocket PCs can easily be brought out to the field because they are small and durable. With a pocket PC, you can make decisions about weed control on the spot without having to go back to the office to enter the information onto a desktop computer.

Pocket Herb is owned and maintained by North Carolina State University and distributed by AgRenaissance Software. Price: $95. Contact AgRenaissance Software LLC, Dept. FIN, Box 91235, Raleigh, NC 27675, 877/518-8030 (toll-free), www.hadss.com or circle 195.