Take Advantage Of Adjuvants

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Drift-Control Agents

A material used in liquid mixtures to prevent drift. Drift control agents are also known as “deposition aids” and improve on-target placement of the pesticide spray by increasing droplet size. Drift reduction can reduce efficacy of some pesticides but may be well worth using it when spraying agrichemicals in sensitive areas.

Surfactant Selection (Source: Adjuvants- EDIS Publication SS-AGR-109)

The numerous types of surfactants available often lead to confusion. The following suggestions will aid in selecting a suitable surfactant:

1. Purchase a surfactant specifically manufactured and marketed for agricultural use. This is the case particularly for non-ionic surfactants, where only those sold specifically for pesticide use should be used.

2. Purchase a surfactant on the basis of percentage active ingredient. For example, it is less profitable to purchase a product with 10% active ingredient at $4/gal than it is to purchase a product with 85% active ingredient at $12/gal.

3. Isopropyl alcohol or water should not be considered as active ingredients. If the label on the container does not specifically state the percentage active ingredient in the container, ask the dealer for this information.

4. Products manufactured for household use should not be used with herbicides.

5. Be careful with claims that a surfactant may cost more, but can be used at lower concentrations than with conventional surfactants. Evidence does not exist that there is any one particular surfactant being marketed that is so effective that rates may be reduced and still obtain normal control.

6. Ignore claims such as: the surfactant contains a silicone or some other agent that will help keep the spray equipment clean, or the surfactant increases water pentration into the soil, or the use of the surfactant will increase root penetration and nutrient uptake by the crop.

7. There are no “miracle” surfactants. There are none that perform substantially better that justify a significant price increase.

8. Some products are recommended to be used with certain surfactants. Consult the label for the approved list.

Choosing the appropriate adjuvant will allow for the maximization of efficacy, mitigation of off-target effects or both, however it is critical to make sure that the adjuvants being used are appropriate for the application being made. In some instances, the adjuvants may not work as intended.

♦Read Label- AMS Supreme 

Disclaimer. The use of trade names in this publication is solely for the purpose of providing specific information. UF/IFAS does not guarantee or warranty the products named, and references to them in this publication does not signify our approval to the exclusion of other products of suitable composition. All chemicals should be used in accordance with directions on the manufacturer’s label. Use pesticides safely. Read and follow directions on the manufacturer’s label.



Brecke, J.B and Unruh, J.B. (2003). Spray Additives and Formulations.http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/pdffiles/LH/LH06100.pdf
Ferrell, J.A., MacDonald, G.E. and Sellers, B. (2008). Adjuvants.http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/pdffiles/WG/WG05000.pdf
Young, B. (2012). Compendium of Herbicide Adjuvants. 11th Edition.http://www.herbicide-adjuvants.com/index.html

Elena M. Toro is an agriculture/natural resources Extension agent at the UF/IFAS Suwannee County office in Live Oak.


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3 comments on “Take Advantage Of Adjuvants

  1. Chris W. Lundy

    I completed this test on July 26, 2012 but have not received notificiation of completion from you. Kindly let me know when I can expect to receive notification. If, for some reason, there was a problem with my submission and you do not have it, please let me know that as well and I will resubmit. Thanks

  2. William R. Carr

    I completed series 38 test on 9/9/2012 but have not received notificiation from anyone regarding completion of test and or results. Kindly let me know when I can expect to be awarded the core points as my renewal is coming up in November, 2012. Thank you Wm. R. Carr