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different application method

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by Ric, May 22, 2008.

  1. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,956


    I just found out about a different (not new) application method that blew my mind when talking to a boom spray expert. Citrus Farmers are injecting growth regulators into the mower deck as they mow between trees and letting the blades air-blast it into the turf. The rate is 5 gallons per acre of mixed growth regulators.

    I am having a hard time accepting that this could work well or could be used on fine turf. From my days of mowing I know wet grass will build up on the underside of the deck very quick.

    Has anyone ever hear or know anything about this?????????
  2. ted putnam

    ted putnam LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,539

    Pretty interesting. I've never heard of it before. I wonder what kind of exposure the applicator is receiving. Every mow guy I've ever seen was covered with clippings and dust by the end of the day. Doesn't sound like a very safe way to apply! JMO
  3. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,494

    Most of it would volatilize. This seems like a poor idea, to me. No different then spraying with tee jet nozzles and then mowing over it afterward. Sure, even though the deck would get wet after so much spraying, you would still be spewing up vapor. Another factor to consider would be distribution within the currents under the deck. I know I would pass if I was the guy on the mower being asked to do it. In the very least, my words would be "Get me a suit and a respirator." lol
  4. ICT Bill

    ICT Bill LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,115

    I think Ric was talking about PGR's which can be quite benign not pesticides. I agree NPK would probably be a waste

    What if you mounted a small unit on the back of your mower and sprayed as you mowed, if you had a 5000 sq ft lawn you would only need 10 gallons of water (80 pounds), I saw a unit that would spray an 11 foot swath at 24 inches above the ground and is 12 volt
  5. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,494

    the boom or nozzles in back would be a much more practicle approach. :) The PGR's are pesticides, though,...regardless.:)
  6. kbrashears

    kbrashears LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 763

    The blades lift. This would not do any 'air injecting'. I think they are wasting their time (well, at least getting less than optimal results). They'd be better off spraying.
  7. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,956


    You make a good point about benign chemicals, if there is such a thing. I know I eat a little bit of chemicals everyday. But let me point out the rate is 5 gallons an ACRE not per thousand sq ft. That is extremely low in anyone's book. The Air Blast would have to product a fog that could drift for miles.


    At least You all have concerns and good reasons why this isn't a good application method. But I haven't seen this set up, only hear about from a very knowledgeable salesman who was not trying to sell me on it. Other answers he gave me to my question were so right on, I have to believe he was telling the truth about deck injection application.

    If this was viable on fine turf, it would revolutionize the application business. I would love to see this in operation on a open field of turf, where I could follow the response. From the way he described it, only one hole is needs to be drilled in the deck with a nozzle pointed at the front stump jumper. At 5 gallons an acre a 25 gallon tank could last a long time. But I am not going to experiment with this method since I see so many downfalls.
  8. 44DCNF

    44DCNF LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,460

    I bet they throttle down and use blades with minimal lift, use a chute blockoff device and maybe skirt extensions around the deck. They must have figured a way to do it with minimal exposure to the applicator and with very little escaping mist. I don't think the moisture would be an issue with clogging as long as they weren't trying to cut too much at once, because I think you see more problems from juicy grass with high moisture content than just wet grass (externally wet). You are not talking about soaking the grass right, but applying to just before the point of runoff? I haven't used Growth Regulators other than for stopping all growth. Would a little escaping mist at ground level done in the best of conditions be a bother in a citrus orchard? I am not familiar with their layout or methods of operating. How high is the understory on a citrus orchard?

    Another thought; Granted it is a different thing, but I have washed my deck many a time with a garden hose bounced off the pavement, under the deck of the running mower blades and there isn't really that much spray outside the deck when the chute is closed. Enough to drift if there's a wind, sure, but I can see this method working if close attention is paid to the conditions it is used in.
    But what do I know.
  9. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,956


    Yes a mulching deck would be a necessity or something similar as you pointed out. Citrus farmer have use Roundup Original for chemical mowing for years now. Most use a 3 boom two tank system. Chemical mowing between trees while non-select kill under the trees. The 3rd boom is used on open areas to chemical mow wide areas. However this method is done after the turf has been mowed as a separate process. BTW Citrus trees can with stand a low AI of Roundup without any stress. Certain utility turfs also bounds back after Roundup. Any one who tried to kill Bermuda grass would know this.

    BTW I have chemical mowed my own property for years now. Occasionally I mess up and have brown spots for several months.
  10. Jacdanboy

    Jacdanboy LawnSite Member
    Posts: 28

    They are probably using a wet blade system - such as Diamond Mowers


    We researched it for roadbank maintenance, but it was cost prohibitive for us.

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