Choosing the Right Adjuvant for the Job
Jun 16, 2020
Proper selection of adjuvants is essential for effective weed control with herbicides. In today’s world of tighter restrictions on rates and how and when to apply, the right adjacent can make a big difference. The correct adjuvant will help you get more of the active ingredient onto the target and make sure it stays there.
The range of adjuvant options can be confusing but, it comes down to the job you want it to do and the mode of action that will achieve your goal.
Water conditioners-- helps ensure herbicides get into plants and don’t get tied up by cations in hard water.
Nonionic surfactants-- helps s[read pesticides on the leaf’s surface to improve plant coverage.
Drift and deposition aids-- helps minimize particle drift by reducing driftable fine particles in a solution and improves coverage.
Crop oil concentrates-- helps slow the drying of a herbicide droplet.
Methylated seed oils-- helps improve penetration through waxy plant cuticles.
Choosing the right adjuvant.
Adjuvants are formulated to address specific conditions that might impede the efficacy of the crop protection product. When choosing an adjuvant be sure to factor in the environmental conditions at application time; temperature, humidity levels, and rainfall amounts can influence the effectiveness of your application. When making an adjuvant decision consider these points:
- Read your herbicide label carefully
- Use adjuvants with characteristics that will help your herbicide be the most effective
- Conduct a test first
- Check to make sure the adjuvant is approved for use with the new herbicide
Know your water.
Minerals in water can tie up a product’s active ingredient in the spray tank. A water conditioner is a great solution to hard water and can help keep herbicides active on the leaf surface.
What will the weed do?
Identify the most problematic weed(s) in your field and think about what it would take to eliminate them-- do they have leaf hairs or a waxy cuticle? If that is the case, a non-ionic surfactant or an oil adjuvant can help get the active ingredient into the plant.
These steps don’t matter if you don’t get as much of the herbicide active ingredients as possible to the target. A drift reduction adjuvant optimizes droplet size for more precise deposition and coverage to help ensure active ingredients reach the target.
Adjuvants are essentials for achieving optimum weed control. When making your decisions seek adjuvants from reputable companies and ask for data to back performance claims. Chat with your Central Counties agronomist to choose the right products for your specific needs.