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Surfactant talk

Posted by Josh Willis 
Surfactant talk
May 19, 2023 07:39AM
Here's a spray nuance that is often not discussed, but seems important in terms of understanding efficacy and fidelity to a spray plan. If I understand surfactants correctly, and in only the most limited way, they seem rather essential to helping your carefully crafted spray get from point A (tank) and stick a landing to point B (leaf, fruit, branch, etc.). This is something those of us with mister blowers really ponder as we send clouds of droplets into the air.

For sprays that are not the Core Holistic recipe, what surfactants do you all commonly use?

For example, if you are using a Serenade only tank mix, will a few drops of dish soap work? Or do you prefer some Neem oil or liquid fish? (Just to list a couple examples I found while searching the HON forum.) I know there is the appeal of extra nutrition instead of petroleum products in traditional sticker spreaders, but I don't know if they work as well as 'traditional' surfactants.

I would imagine the tank mix might effect the surfactant used. For ex., Serenade may have different needs for coverage than Oxidate, or Dipel, or Grandevo when applied w/o Surround, etc. Others, such as Cueva, I think come with a surfactant baked in.

Maybe it is just as simple as adding soap. But I'm curious if any of you are considering more nuance on this than me.

Zone 7a in West-Central MD
Non-commercial, ~100 fruit trees, dwarf to MM106

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/19/2023 07:46AM by Josh Willis.
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