The clock is ticking

04/01/2007 02:00:00 AM

At $10 per pound, the chemical cost would be $750 per acre.

VIF and metalized plastic film run about $220 to $245 per 4,000-foot roll of 60-inch-wide plastic, according to an informal survey Chellemi conducted in December 2006.

If growers use a standard low-barrier film, they will need to increase the rate to 300 pounds of Midas per treated acre, Allan says. High-density polyethylene that is 0.75 mil thick runs about $190 per 6,000-foot roll, according to Chellemi’s survey.

Having a Symmetry rig apply the fumigant is not required, but is recommended, Allan says. “It provides greater accuracy in terms of rates per acre and reduced rates per acre, and greater protection for workers and the environment,” he says, adding the rig can be used for any fumigant.

Adapting to a 50-50 methyl bromide blend
The Midas price compares with methyl bromide, which currently sells for about $3.70 per pound for a 50-50 mixture of bromide and chloropicrin, Chellemi says.

“The problem with 50-50 is that growers need to make sure they have applied enough methyl bromide to achieve nutsedge control,” Chellemi says.

In the past, when the fumigant was 67 percent bromide and 33 percent chloropicrin, he says growers were able to cut fumigant rates in half from 350 pounds per treated acre to 175 pounds by using metalized mulch or VIF. Methyl bromide constituted about 116 pounds of that mixture.

With the new blend, which has less actual methyl bromide, Chellemi says the half rate would mean only 82 pounds of bromide per treated acre. So growers will need to bump up the amount of fumigant they use to ensure nutsedge control.

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