Off-target spray drift is one of the most common forms of chemical wastage on farms. As wasteful and undesirable as it is, this wastage can still be reduced and managed, if not fully eliminated.
But before we look into ways of minimizing and reducing it, we will have to have a quick look at some of the causes of off-target spray drift. First, the extent to which the spray chemical is volatile will greatly contribute to this drift. Second, we have the prevailing weather elements and conditions at that particular time of spraying. The size of the droplet and equipment in use will also go a long way in contributing to this drift.
The list below gives us clear and proven keys that will help in the reduction of off-target spray drift.
Read instructions first ,and carefully
Most of us are fond of ignoring simple instructions on product labels. Yet some of them contain all the necessary directions that need to be followed in order to know when to carry out spraying, the size of apparatus and other factors that actually contribute to the spray drift.
Favorable and optimal weather conditions
Weather conditions, and in particular temperatures and winds, are highly influential when it comes to the level of spray target. Just in case it turns out that the weather is not conducive for spraying, postpone it until it becomes more favorable. For instance, winds with a moderate speed of less than 15 km/h blowing from sensitive areas are okay for spraying. If they go beyond this speed limit, then they will badly disrupt your spraying.
Prior consultations with your neighbors is vital
Make prior arrangements to inform your neighbors about your spraying plans. This will give them time to take all the necessary protective measures to safeguard their homes, properties and other valuables that can be affected by spraying so that you don’t end up in unnecessary strife and tensions with your neighbors.
Be mindful of other vulnerable animals and plants
Ensure that all the nearby crops, plants and animals that can be harmed by the chemical being sprayed are protected from the drift.
Choose the right chemical formulation
Get the right kind of chemical that has a lower tendency of drifting off the target. Make sure that the chemical has a lower volatility level because this is a contributing factor to off-target drifting.
Optimized nozzle and spray settings
Make sure that the settings of the nozzle are optimized to produce the most sizable droplet in a manner that minimizes drift while at the same time maintaining the effectiveness of the spray chemical.
Properly calibrated and set up tools and equipments
Make sure that all the apparatus and equipments that you are going to use are set up properly and have correct calibration.