[NAFEX] Mixing Surround and Neem oil in the same tank?

Scott Smith scott at cs.jhu.edu
Wed Jun 2 22:43:41 EDT 2010


Since I am quoted below I want to point out I was not stating that neem could simply be used with Surround, only that Surround can be put on with neem in an initial coat of the season, and then soon after a neem-free coat can be put on top.  The bottom coat will help keep the top coat on the tree and the top coat will flake off on the bugs.  Or so goes the theory; I have not tried this method.

Now, while I was looking at my earlier post on that I noticed I wrote that mineral oil is a "drying" oil, but I had my terms mixed up.  Oils are classified as drying or non-drying; drying oils are what is used in oil paints and dry to a hard surface.  Non-drying oils never dry but will partly evaporate over time; the lighter non-drying oils will completely evaporate in a few days.  Mineral oil and neem oil are in fact both classified as non-drying, and I had it wrong last time.  All of the studies that showed problems with Surround and oil were Surround sprayed with cottonseed oil, which is classified as partly drying.  A drying oil would be a bad thing with Surround as it would be like mixing some oil-based paint with your Surround and "painting" it on the tree -- it will not flake off on the bugs.  I have never seen a study showing that a non-drying oil was bad with Surround, and particularly one which evaporated rather fast might not be a problem at all.  I have been using mineral oil with Surround and got good control on plum curculio this spring.  Since neem oil is also non-drying it may in fact not cause a big problem with Surround.  Or, it could be the evaporation rate of neem oil is much slower so it will cause more problems than mineral oil; the modern light mineral oils such as the Stylet Oil I use are very light and evaporate rapidly (I found a study which stated a 1% spray of mineral oil took one day to evaporate).

Scott


> The way Surround works is it *comes off* on the insects, and they spend their time trying to 
> clean it off rather than laying eggs.  Using a sticker (or oil) vitiates this.  (But if you are using it 
> to protect against sunscald, rather than to stop curculio or coddlers, then this probably is of 
> less consequence.
> 
> 
> > I've wanted to try a neem/ Surround combination for some time, but
> > didn't because the manufacturer of Surround recommends against mixing
> > it with oils & neem is an oil.
> > 
> > 
> > -----Original Message-----
> > >From: Scott Smith <scott at cs.jhu.edu>
> > >Sent: May 17, 2010 10:27 PM
> > >To: nafex at lists.ibiblio.org
> > >Subject: [NAFEX] Mixing Surround and Neem oil in the same tank?
> > >
> > >John, I have seen folks recommend laying down the initial coat of
> > >Surround with a sticker or neem, and then putting the second (and
> > >more) coats on top of it.  The idea is it will keep the Surround on
> > >because the bottom layer will be stuck tight and will help the layers
> > >above it stay on.  I have never tried this myself.  

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