As a reminder, don’t forget to calibrate your sprayers this spring as we head into our broadleaf weed control spraying season. In my travels last year, I was amazed to see how many performance issues I addressed that were, in fact, due to calibration issues once investigated.
In our world of the Internet, there are numerous detailed resources to help you calibrate. I like this Herbicide Sprayer Calibration Worksheet. The Advanced Turf Solutions product catalog also offers a nice resource for Calibrating Your Granular Spreader.
Among these many resources, here are some highlights to get you thinking.
- First, make sure you read the label and understand the rates, mixing order, and recommended water to chemical ratios.
- Backpack and hand-held sprayers: Don’t over look these important tools. Calibrate the individual sprayer to the person using it! The amount of spray applied to an area will depend on walking speed, pressure, spray swath-width, and spray tip. Any changes to these variables, affects the calibration.
- Tank sprayers: Understand your sprayer and the variables that go with it! The owner’s manual should be a referenced when calibrating. Understanding your nozzle capabilities, pressure regulation, and ground speed are all of equal importance. Again, calibrate the sprayer to the operator.
- Spreaders: The spreader settings on the bag are guidelines only. The variables in no particular order are: the operator, age of the spreader, the weather, and quality and consistency of the product. Calibrate the spreader to the operator. Always calibrate the spreader/operator to a property that is accurately measured.
These are simple tips, but they are sometimes overlooked. Call your ATS rep for more resources on calibration. Have a great spring!
Vice President Turf & Ornamental Sales