We get asked all the time for "expanded" directions on how to use Hedge Defense Plant Protectant, but as the label indicates - there are no secret tricks, application is easy!
Best Time To Treat
Plants are never too young to be started on a Hedge Defense Plant Protectant Regimen. Whether you are starting from seeds or cuttings, the day the first leaf emerges or the day cuttings get situated in domes, it's safe to spray. When spraying young plants that are being kept in humidity domes, always make sure the newly applied Plant Protectant has time to fully dry before securing the domes back in place.
Plants can be treated at any time of day under any type of lighting. There is no need to turn off any lights to spray Plant Protectant. It is, however, recommended to temporarily shut off all fans (if present) while spraying.
At our test farm, we like to spray plants early in the day (indoors) followed by outdoor plants after the sun has had a chance to dry any overnight precipitation or condensation. We choose to spray early for the sake of worker comfort - spraying in a hot afternoon greenhouse or direct sun is not fun! However, if your schedule only permits afternoon spraying, there is no technical reason not to do so.
Using Other Products With Hedge
While there is a high probability that Hedge Defense Plant Protectant will replace more than one of your current pesticide solutions, depending on the crop you are growing, you may need to incorporate supplemental products. For example, if your crop experiences pest pressure from large insects (grasshoppers, large caterpillars, etc), you will need to address those pests separately. When choosing other foliar products that can be used with Hedge, it is important to only select those that do not create any kind of lasting residual barrier. The key to success when using Hedge Plant Protectant is the formation of a direct bond with the bare plant surface. Each week, as your plants grow, new plant surfaces are exposed and are in need of protection. In order to ensure proper protection, Hedge Defense Plant Protectant must be applied directly to bare leaf surfaces; other products with residual barrier will interfere with product efficacy.
We find it best to spray companion products (pest or nutrient) 1-2 days after a Hedge Plant Protectant application. This gives the "other" product time to break down and be removed prior to the next Hedge application. Beware of products with high oil content (ex, neem oil), as they create a coating that is very difficult if not impossible to remove, and will interfere with Hedge's efficacy.
Keep an Eye on Uptake
It's no surprise that healthier plants grow more, and to grow more, additional water and/or nutrients can be required. Many large scale operations have hydration and nutrition regimens dialed in like clockwork, but when first introducing Hedge, it is important to monitor plants for signs of water and/or nutrient deficiencies. Hedge-protected plants typically take up more water than unprotected plants, and nutrient levels often need bumped up. Watch for visual cues associated with your crop to indicate deficiencies and make the corrections accordingly.
What Nutrients Work With Hedge?
There is no need to switch nutrient products when adding Hedge Plant Protectant to your operation. On our test farm, we choose to avoid foliar feeding unless absolutely necessary (ex. nitrogen boost); all of our routine feeding is done through the roots. Continue to follow input rules relative to the industry you are operating in.
What is the Best Spraying Technique?
As the label indicates, you can use any type of sprayer when applying Hedge Defense Plant Protectant. The best bond is achieved and the least material is used through the use of an electrostatic sprayer. Set the sprayer to the finest mist and take your time when spraying. Be sure to get all surfaces of the plant evenly coated, especially the underside of leaves. If plant growth is dense or plants are closely spaced, take the time to carefully brush foliage aside to adequately reach all plant surfaces. Remember to turn off all fans while spraying. Application technique is the key to success. Simply repeat weekly, and watch your plants thrive!