Spraying breakthrough set to reduce chemical usage

Mike Birdin Industry News

Mankar a.jpgSignificant savings in time, manpower and pesticide usage are promised for a new and highly-effective professional weed control system being introduced into the United Kingdom by Shropshire firm, Amenity Land Services (ALS), specialist suppliers of amenity horticulture products and services.

Utilising Mankar Ultra Low Volume (ULV) spraying equipment from Germany, the system is able to apply the absolute minimum necessary quantities of herbicide - typically 2 litres/ha - to achieve the required results, greatly reducing impact on the environment.

By comparison, Controlled Droplet Application (CDA) systems typically use between 10 and 15 litres/ha while a knapsack sprayer uses a massive 250 - 300 litres/ha.

The exceptional accuracy and ULV capabilities of Mankar application equipment has enabled ALS to develop in association with Monsanto a total weed control system using Roundup ProBiactive 450, Monsanto's new and highly-advanced glyphosate-based herbicide incorporating a unique, performance-enhancing surfactant.

This patented ingredient greatly improves plant retention, uptake and translocation compared with traditional glyphosate formulations, enabling Roundup ProBiactive 450 to deliver unrivalled weed control performance, greater convenience and higher safety levels for managers, contractors and operators. The product is approved for weed control in amenity, industrial, forestry and aquatic areas as well as orchards and ornamental/tree nurseries.

Applications made using drift-free Mankar ULV spraying equipment enables very small doses of the product to be used without any compromise in endMankar b.jpg results. So effective is the Mankar application equipment that clearance has been given to apply Roundup ProBiactive 450 undiluted using the system, ensuring optimum plant absorption and weed control. New EU pesticide legislation requires 'minimum necessary' application of pesticide in public spaces and the Mankar system does exactly that.

The Mankar ULV system has been used widely by local authorities across Europe since the mid 1990s and is the only application method allowed to operate near watercourses in Holland.

Two key design features of Mankar ULV equipment combine to promote maximum accuracy of spray applications without drift. The first is the use of a vertical rotating disc that produces small, evenly-sized droplets of around 40 microns instead of the 200 microns associated with conventional CDA. Rather than disperse the droplets sideways in a circle, the Mankar system propels them vertically downwards at high speed in a flat fan shape, enabling the tiny droplets to stick to the plant or ground before they lose momentum and drift. This ability and the small size of the droplets results in greatly improved target coverage.

The second design feature is the windshield enclosing the standard Mankar spray head. By sheltering the head against wind, not only is the risk of drift reduced but it allows pesticides to be applied in windier conditions than would normally be possible, further helping reduce downtime and costs. The shield also helps protect the head against possible damage in use or transport and improves safe application amongst shrubs.

Mankar ULV application equipment is available in a range of options to suit a wide variety of amenity, highway and general horticulture weed control requirements.

Mankar c.jpg The most popular items are expected to be the MC20 and MC30 hand lances with shrouded spray heads able to apply herbicide over widths adjustable from 100mm to 300mm and 130mm to 450mm respectively. There is also a hand-controlled 200mm shrouded spot sprayer, a path/pavement sprayer and a kerb/pathway edging sprayer, the last two mentioned being equipped with a support wheel.

In addition to pedestrian-operated equipment, customers can select Mankar ULV spraying systems for use with ATVs, tractors and utility vehicles and there are standard and row crop configurations available for spraying pesticides within plant and tree nurseries, garden centres, vineyards and general horticultural cropping situations.

ALS is making the system available either for outright purchase or for hire, the latter inclusive of supplies of Roundup ProBiactive 450 for which ALS is one of the few authorised outlets within the UK.

Prices of the equipment for purchase or for hire are available from ALS, telephone 01952 641949, email sales@amenity.co.uk or visit www.amenity.co.uk. As a guide, the MC20 hand lance with 500ml tank is priced at £345.

Although initially more expensive to purchase than most other spraying systems, return on investment is very high due to the savings achievable both in pesticide use and, particularly, manpower. Compared with a conventional sprayer, the Mankar ULV system uses at least 50 per cent less herbicide while savings of 80 per cent are possible over CDA.

For further information, please contact:

Amenity Land Solutions
Tel: 01952 641949
Email: sales@amenity.co.uk
web: www.amenity.co.uk

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