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Just curious if anyone has any experience with lower water volumes and fungicides. Local spray plane sprays 2 gal/acre and charges a dollar more than ground which will spray up to 20 gal/acre reluctantly. I have used the plane in the past and it seems to work ok at 2 but i asked about spraying 4 gallons and rate almost doubled in price. I never done any trials but wondering if anyone else has and what your thoughts are. I usually hire the plane for some acres just to keep him around but i would still like to know if im getting value from the fungicide at the low rate?
 

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I spray my own fungicide with a ground rig but I try to let mother nature put the water on for me. If I can spray in a super dewey morning, then I cut back to 10 gpa. I use a good sticking agent like APSA 80 or Rainfast, so theres no runoff. If leaves are bone dry, then I go to 13-15, depending on field size. Have had good success so far
 

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I think with the plane the conditions are more important than the water volume. I wouldn't allow spraying in a hot or windy day but have had the plane spray some on a calm evening several years ago and it gave excellent coverage at probably similar water rates.

Having said that I do all my own spraying if possible, usually contact herbicides and fungicides at 9.2 GPA because that's 120 acres on the 1100 gallon tank. Usually run at close to 100PSI through air induction nozzles and the coverage is excellent. Again I will shut down mid-day if it's hot or windy.
 

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If you need penetration of the canopy with a fungicide like getting to the bottom of a lentil for anthracnose protection, then a ground rig with lots of water is the only way. I would take a high clearance any day over a plane unless it is too wet. Planes charge a lot for a poor job.
 

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The plane can sometimes be your best coverage due to vortices created with speed and downdraft. There have been studies done to support this.

Sounds like low water volume, but I wouldn't bet against the plane doing as good or better of a job than a ground rig with 5 times the water volume.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
The plane can sometimes be your best coverage due to vortices created with speed and downdraft. There have been studies done to support this.

Sounds like low water volume, but I wouldn't bet against the plane doing as good or better of a job than a ground rig with 5 times the water volume.
Ive watched the plane spray on a dead calm evening and you see some go down but theres also some that seems to hang in the air so thats what makes me question if its actually a good coverage? Would extra water be better? I would think with extra water then you are running higher pressure which would then create more fines or is that not how it works?
 

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Ive watched the plane spray on a dead calm evening and you see some go down but theres also some that seems to hang in the air so thats what makes me question if its actually a good coverage? Would extra water be better? I would think with extra water then you are running higher pressure which would then create more fines or is that not how it works?
I think the AI tips just work better at high pressure, probably more fines yes.

When I had the plane I had two fields being done with a dirt road in between, I would park on the road and watch him cross right in front of me and then I got some real good close up pictures of the leaves. With flag timing on wheat there was probably 20 little droplets on every leaf, maybe more. Probably wouldn't work if an inversion but that night it was excellent. Like I said I think the conditions would affect a plane more than a ground rig. If it was 30C those droplets were so small they might evaporate before they got to the ground???
 

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The plane can sometimes be your best coverage due to vortices created with speed and downdraft. There have been studies done to support this.

Sounds like low water volume, but I wouldn't bet against the plane doing as good or better of a job than a ground rig with 5 times the water volume.
I agree with the "vortices and down draft" that the plane creates to be part of their success while only using 2 gpa. I liked what I saw with the ground sprayer using Turbo T green non air induction nozzles at 80-100 psi and spraying whatever gpa a 1200 gallon tank would cover on a quarter, about 7.5-8 gpa. I liked the rolling and swirling behind the sprayer at 12- 14 mph on a calm morning or evening because the swirl can cover leaf bottoms and parts of a plant that a direct "spray" does not have access to. This is not about reducing drift, it is exactly the opposite.
 

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I think you definitely have to babysit them. I’ve sprayed fungicides during the day thinking man this is the last tank when the spray pattern looks like 80% was going up not down only to have a spray plane show up right beside me!!!

I have to legitimize my high clearance sprayer! :22: One aerial pass of everything would be $125K! One fricking pass.
 

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The best job i have ever done with fungicide was with a sprayair boom at 4 gallons per acre. It got chemical on the top of the leaves, the bottom, the sprayer and the neighbors crop while it was at it. Did a better job than i do now at 10 gallons. I would still have it but the sprayer was a complete piece of junk and the drift was unmanageable.
 

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18mph is pretty much my go to, 2gpa and a 640 acre fill is tempting.
Apparently with roundup it works great...
With fungicide the jury is out...
2 gal on roundup you have to have no or little dust. It's super hot on the weeds it does hit though. I did some testing pushing low water volumes last year, at 1.7-2 gal with 015 aixr @ 25-30psi, 17.5mph left strips directly behind the gator. Looked okay at first but regrew and looked retarded this spring. At 2.5 that wasn't so much of a problem and at 3 it went away completely for me. So I ran with 2.7-3gal all this yr and got great control droplet size out of the aixr is a high medium/low coarse VMD in the mid 300's. If it gets windy drop to 30-35 psi, slow down to 14-15mph and have a fully coarse spray pattern without having to run alot of water.

Insecticide usually run 1.7-2.0gpa with orange 01 wilger mr's. Usually get ~600-620 realistic acres per tank depending on field shape.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
18mph is pretty much my go to, 2gpa and a 640 acre fill is tempting.
Apparently with roundup it works great...
With fungicide the jury is out...
2 gal on roundup you have to have no or little dust. It's super hot on the weeds it does hit though. I did some testing pushing low water volumes last year, at 1.7-2 gal with 015 aixr @ 25-30psi, 17.5mph left strips directly behind the gator. Looked okay at first but regrew and looked retarded this spring. At 2.5 that wasn't so much of a problem and at 3 it went away completely for me. So I ran with 2.7-3gal all this yr and got great control droplet size out of the aixr is a high medium/low coarse VMD in the mid 300's. If it gets windy drop to 30-35 psi, slow down to 14-15mph and have a fully coarse spray pattern without having to run alot of water.

Insecticide usually run 1.7-2.0gpa with orange 01 wilger mr's. Usually get ~600-620 realistic acres per tank depending on field shape.
Good info! Thanks for sharing that.
 

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Without testing out in the field, everyone thinks that their current setup is doing the best job. Put down some water sensitive paper in different configurations to mimic your targets (on the ground, taped to leaves, vertical wrapped around rebar for fhb, etc) and start changing variables to optimize the job.

It’s really no different than setting a combine or drill, some small changes really help out. One thing that was apparent is increasing water volume improved the job quality. I was happy with fungicides with 12.5gpa or more, 15gpa with diquat.
 

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I'm curious what the per acre rates are you got quoted? $8-$9 p/acre will cover most acres here.

My brother is a cropduster, and my dad did it for 20 years or so. "Here" 5 gallons is the minimum rate, with a lot at 7 gallons, and occasionally 10 gals. A lot of trials have been done here over the years examining water rates for different chemistries. Long story shorter, a blind coverage test determined that 5 gpa actually had better fungicide coverage than 7 gpa. The nozzles on the planes are CP, which use a little different technology theory than ground rig nozzles. If applying phosphites on potatoes however, then the minimum is 7 gpa, anything less and leaf burn occurs. Once in awhile my brother will bring a plane from another region to help out if he gets behind in the summer, first question he asks is if the plane is capable of 7 gpa because most of the Midwest planes max out at 5 gpa, and 5 gpa with phosphites = upset farmer.

Cerone/Ethephon is a great shower of coverage patterns. Anything less than 5gpa shows significant streaking later in maturity. That's the same pattern your fungicide is going on with.

A few years ago a neighbor that has a history of contending with DON split a pivot. 1/2 with plane and 1/2 with ground rig. Plane was 5gpa and ground rig was 20gpa. Upon testing the grain, there was no statistical difference, but the plane side was slightly lower. Should note, the ground rig was NOT using forward/back nozzles.
 
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