Friday, November 28, 2014

Lindsey Getz

Free-lance writer based in Royersford, Pa.


Creations for Lawn Care


Take a look at the latest chemical technology to hit the marketplace.

October 30, 2014

These days lawn care operators are under tremendous pressure to get the job done quicker, but still be affordable. As a result, a large focus of product suppliers’ latest developments has been on combination formulations that offer more of an “all-in-one” product. There are a variety of new products already on the market with more to come in 2015.

The newest products have updates and improvements to existing chemicals that have already been successful in the landscape market. For instance, TZone SE Broadleaf Herbicide for Tough Weeds, manufactured by PBI-Gordon, delivers the same broadleaf weed control in cool-season turf grass as the original TZone product LCOs are already familiar with. But the SE product is a reduced solvent formula that penetrates the cuticle to control weeds like wild violet, ground ivy, black medic, oxalis, clover and lespedeza.

“LCOs hate callbacks,” says David Loecke, herbicide product manager for PBI-Gordon. “So TZone SE is formulated for speed. It delivers twice the triclopyr as most combination products so you get visible activity in hours, including leaf and stem curl, yellowing, and brown – and that can mean fewer callbacks.”

Following the success of Bayer’s pre-emergent herbicide Specticle, the company has now introduced Specticle Total, a new chemical combination labeled for non-selective weed control in hardscapes and mulched areas around ornamental plants. The manufacturer says this non-selective herbicide, launching in 2015, will control existing weeds and grasses plus prevent new weeds for up to six months.

“Specticle Total was developed to provide landscape professionals with a non-selective weed control solution with extended residual,” says Jeff Michel, herbicides business manager. “This post-emergent control delivers up to six months residual – a key point for LCOs who are concerned with efficiency. Being able to control weeds – whether it be on paved areas, on landscaped beds or around areas where ornamentals might be planted. The idea of not having to come back on a regular basis and retreat is really important to busy LCOs.”

Used in combination with last year’s new product Specticle G, which allows LCOs to treat weeds prior to coming up, Michel says Bayer is creating a “one-two-punch scenario.”

“Use Specticle G to prevent the growth of the majority of weeds and then use Specticle Total to recreate that weed barrier for any that have escaped or broken the barrier,” Michel says. “The idea is that most weed issues will be taken care of with just a once- or twice-a-year application when married with a true preventative option like Specticle G. It’s a complete solution.”

Disease and insects.

Tackling turf grass problems is always a hot topic. LCOs want to get fast control over disease and insects before too much damage is done and there are several new products on the market for this purpose. From BASF come two new fungicide products including Lexicon Intrinsic fungicide, a new chemistry combination for control of turfgrass diseases like brown patch, dollar spot, fairy ring, pythium root dysfunction, snow mold and summer patch. Lexicon combines the enhanced systemic properties of Xemium fungicide with Insigna Intrinsic brand fungicide.

Also new from BASF is Xzemplar Fungicide, developed to provide protection against dollar spot as well as other turf grass diseases. The product was made using the latest carboxamide technology and building on the manufacturer’s experience with Boscalid. This has allowed BASF to create a new, broader spectrum and more active carboxamide fungicide.

On the insecticide front comes FMC Professional Solutions’ Triple Crown T&O Insecticide. With its three-way combination of FMC bifenthrin, FMC zeta-cypermethrin and imidacloprid, this formulation offers multiple modes of action on key pests.

“Triple Crown T&O is a great fit for lawn and landscape professionals because it eliminates the need to tank mix multiple products to control pests, saving time, money and shelf space,” says Steve Mora, FMC insecticide product manager.

Dow AgroSciences has released XXpire WG Insecticide, which combines two new active ingredients: Isoclast Active (a new class of insecticide chemistry) and spinetoram – to control both chewing and sap-feeding insects commonly found in ornamentals. According to the company, XXpire WG is effective on 39 pests including seven of the 10 most troublesome ornamental insects.

Terminix has also released a new product. The Terminix Mosquito Service, an EPA-exempt formulation, is said to collapse mosquito populations in treated areas by more than 90 percent in two to three weeks.

Total control.

Getting control over the turf is a top priority for LCOs and adjuvants also help achieve that goal. Winfield has introduced the Gulfstream adjuvant which the company says has the potential to improve spray coverage and penetration in dense canopies while promoting increased absorption of products on a leaf surface. It also includes buffering agents to lower spray solution pH which may reduce hydrolysis and has the potential to improve performance of certain products.

“LCOs are pressed for time more than ever and adjuvants help them to be more efficient by getting the job done right the first time,” says Aaron Johnsen, product manager for WinField. “Also, weeds continue to be a persistent threat but adding an adjuvant like Gulfstream has shown to significantly improve overall weed control and efficiency.”

Also developed to help improve efficiency and assist LCOs in getting control over the turf is Winfield’s Aquicare wetting agent. This soil wetting agent will help improve water retention and reduce watering requirements to maintain turf quality. The formula is designed to help prevent localized dry spot conditions and control water-repellent soils. Because of less evaporation and runoff, Aquicare promotes more efficient use of irrigation water or rainfall.

“On top of recent drought issues, LCOs are under constant pressure to keep their clients happy,” Johnsen says. “Aquicare wetting agnet helps LCOs to maintain healthy grounds while doing more with less.”


Stay up to date on the latest new products for LCOs. Visit for a complete database of new chemical technology.

Lindsey Getz Archive

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Features - Irrigation