Liquid Mixture- struggling

Discussion in 'Fertilizer Application' started by lawncaresolution, Aug 2, 2017.

  1. lawncaresolution

    lawncaresolution LawnSite Member
    Messages: 52

    Hi all,

    I am struggling with a liquid mixture right now. After I create the mix, my sprayer is clogging. The mixture is too thick and something is not dissolving like it should. Here is my mixture:

    Fill tank third full of water. Add liquid Iron and micronutrients (Lesco 12-0-0)

    Continue add rest of water to 200 gallon tank as I do the following:

    Dump 50 lb bag of Urea Nitrogen (46-0-0). I agitate and mix manually.

    Dump 25 lb of Potash (0-0-62). I agitate and mix manually.

    Finally, dump in Trimec 1000. I agitate and mix manually.

    My sprayer is covering .5 gallons per 1000 square feet.

    Some background info, I have mixed the Urea Nitrogen and Trimec and did not have any issues. When I started to add the Iron and Potash is when I began getting clogged. I'm going to try a "jar test" but thought maybe somebody else had a similar issue before.
  2. heritage

    heritage LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,349


    Don't mix non-chelated iron sulfate products ( lesco 12-0-0) with amine formulations of certain phenoxy herbicides (trimec 1000).

    This could cause a cottage cheese like precipitate to form.

    Try FeRROMECĀ® AC Liquid Iron 15-0-0 instead, as it is "Amine Compatible"

    OR Iron in a Chelate form.

    The Iron Sulfate in the 12-0-0 is reacting with your trimec 1000. Do a jar test with these 2 to comfirm and see for yourself.

    When it's much cooler (below 50F) and you are using an "Ester" herbicide, you can then use your lesco 12-0-0 without issue.
  3. lawncaresolution

    lawncaresolution LawnSite Member
    Messages: 52

    Thanks for the reply! When I mix only Trimec 1000 and the 12-0-0 Iron, no clogging occurs. Does it need the UREA and POtash to create clumps?
  4. heritage

    heritage LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,349

    Then add the potassium chloride with your next jar test of 12-0-0/Trimec 1000.
  5. heritage

    heritage LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,349

    If you get a reaction adding in the 0-0-62 potassium chloride, then the chloride is reacting with the amide in the herbicide/12-0-0 combo.

    Change your potassium source to 0-0-50 Potassium Sulfate.
  6. lawncaresolution

    lawncaresolution LawnSite Member
    Messages: 52

    Its been a frustrating a few weeks trying to figure out a mixture that involves both Trimec 1000 and Iron. I have tried three different forms of Iron (Main Event, Lesco 12-0-0 and Ferromec). All formulas resulted in an "oatmeal" type mixture with Ferromec actually being the worst. I was able to touch base with a PBI Gordon representative and he informed me the PH in my tank was the issue. I spray low volume (0.5 gallons per 1000 sq ft) and so my tanks don't have enough water in it (200 gallon tank but very concentrated mix). He said moving to an Ester Herbicide will resolve this issue.

    I'm hopeful the ester product will resolve the issue. I'll keep you all posted as to what I find out.
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2017
  7. jc1

    jc1 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,017

    have you tested your supply water?
  8. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,430

    I am not sure I understand. Did you say you were applying a half-gallon per thousand sqft? Then your 200 gal tank covers 400,000 sqft--right?
    Does that mean you added 400 ounces of Trimec 1000?

    This is really odd! I looked up the rate of Ferromec use on the AM Leonard site. They say use: .5 to 4 gallons per thousand sqft. WHAT?!!

    Hopefully they meant to say ounces. Even at the low rate you need 1.56 gallons--that seems like a lot. Its expensive, even at the low rate, it costs almost as much as your herbicide.

    Did you mean to say you are applying only 23 pounds of actual nitrogen to 400,000 sqft?

    Read a few of the old posts on this site. Two gallons per thousand sqft is more common. Followed up with granular fertilizer. Do what the experienced guys are doing. Talk with the guys at your supplier--and your salesman. Buy him a cup of coffee. Listen to him.

    Check your tank pH. How much Ferromec are you using? Label suggests 2 to 8 ounces per thousand sqft. How much herbicide? Skip the iron until you can switch to an ester. I estimate the cost of the iron would be about $275, per tank--over 6 gallons, right?
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2017
  9. lawncaresolution

    lawncaresolution LawnSite Member
    Messages: 52

    Yes, my sprayer is calibrated to cover 400,000 square feet with 200 gallons or .5 gallons of water per 1000 square feet. The Ferromec label does say you can use .5 gallons of WATER per 1000 square feet. When I mixed the Ferromec, I mixed it 5 ounces per 1000 (label suggests 2-8 ounces per 1000 square feet)

    I was mixing in a small amount of nitrogen and potash. I'm not trying to push growth on my lawns in late July / Early August. I have done three fertilizer applications before this application - 2 granular, 1 liquid.

    I like the results of granular but I'm trying to move toward the liquid. All of my competition is liquid and most of the people in my area prefer liquid. I do spend time educating them on the benefits of a granular application and those people are starting to "get it" once they see the results. I do have several associations that will only allow a liquid.

    The cost of the iron is $19 (29.50 for 2.5 gallon jug of Ferromec) per acre and the cost of herbicide is $16 dollars an acre. Add in the Urea and Potash and you are looking at an application that costs around $40 an acre. I charge $130 for this application which is right in the ball park of my competitors...not necessarily cheaper or more expensive.

    I really like the idea of the customer being able to see a cosmetic difference to their grass for this application instead of just killing their weeds....again without pushing too much growth. I have tried it on my own yard with iron and it looks great.
  10. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,430

    Not sure I understand. Did you say you used 5 ounces per thousand sqft? So 400 thousand sqft times 5 ounces would be 2000 ounces of iron per tank.
    You are applying around 156 pounds of iron and one hundred pounds of fertilizer per tank. What about the risk of iron stains--and the expense of removing said stains?
    And local custom prefers you to apply liquid. So be it.
    Well then, my suggestion is to skip the potash, or reduce it down to a minimum. For instance use a ratio of about one-tenth as much potash as nitrogen.
    My idea--if customers will accept it--alternate liquid weed and feed(and iron) with dry fertilizer treatments. Be sure to mention in your customer communication materials that poly-coated dry fertilizer is superior, in that it is longer lasting, and the gradual release is nearer to natural conditions such as when organic matter decomposes. Slow release fertilizer reduces the risk of ground water nitrate contamination, and surface water algae blooms.

    Have a few soil tests done. You want to have more soil tests than your competition. And you want to add lime or other micronutrients where there is a need. Something your competitors probably cannot match.
    Growth of the grass is important--low nitrogen means slow growth--thin grass, poor recovery from traffic and dry spots that don't recover.

    And hurry, summer is just 6 weeks of bad skiing in your town, am I right?

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