13 October 1995

Trials back up use of adjuvant

SCIENTIFIC evidence supporting the use of one adjuvant has emerged, substantiating claims of better coverage and faster uptake.

The trials conducted by Dr Ted Baker, formerly of Long Ashton Research Centre, Bristol used plant growth regulator chlormequat with and without the vegetable oil additive Codacide.

The fluids were applied to leaves as large droplets using a syringe, so measurements could be made. After 24 hours 97% of the original deposit had been absorbed by the leaf where Codacide was used but just 65% where it was omitted, says Dr Baker.

The work showed a standard formulation settled on the leaf as spherical "caps", giving little contact with the leaf and providing poor uniformity of distribution.

Adding Codacide ensured 31% more chemical adhered to the plant. It also lowered the surface tension of the fluid, giving more extensive and uniform coverage. Applications including Codacide dried in 30 seconds, minimising the risk of rain or dew wash off. &#42