[Market-farming] sprayer type for mixed veggies, foliar feeding

Willie McKemie mf at austinfarm.org
Mon Jun 11 09:53:41 EDT 2007

On Mon, Jun 11, 2007 at 08:55:17AM -0400, Goodwill at Homefields Farm wrote:
> We have 5 acres of mixed veggies (organic CSA) and do some spraying and 
> a lot of foliar feeding.  We have outgrown out Stihl backpack mist 
> blower and are looking for something better suited, and i'm wondering 
> what your experience would recommend:

Many years ago, I used a 50 gallon diaphragm pump mist blower as an 
orchard sprayer.  The 50 gallon capacity was not enough for the ~10 
acre orchard and I replaced it with a 300 gallon diaphragm pump trailer 
mist blower.  That worked well as a 10 acre orchard sprayer.

I have my vegetable fields laid out in 50 foot widths (10 5' rows in 
each).  The trailer sprayer would not reliably reach the centers of the 
fields.  I then got a 500 gallon Nut Hustler pecan sprayer with a 
moveable volute.  That did reach to the centers of the fields and does 
a fine job of spraying both peaches and vegetable.  Probably, any 
blower with a directable volute would work as well on vegetables.

Now days, I rarely use the the Nut Hustler; it is just too much trouble 
to get organized to do a spray job.  I now mostly use a cheap 15 gallon 
electric sprayer mounted on a high clearance tractor.  Adjustable booms 
allow me to spray one, two, or three rows at a time; that allows me to 
spray three rows while driving over only one row.  I like the setup 
because I can easily get organized to spray only one or two rows; the 
capacity of the sprayer is about 12 ~500' rows.  Also, when the sprayer 
gives me trouble I can easily and cheaply replace parts or the whole 

Willie, ONWARD!  Through the fog!
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