A keen advocate of our granular H2Gro wetting agent, Steve Hughes - technical sales manager for the West Midlands and Wales – is finding the new liquid version a useful addition to the portfolio helping his growers overcome some specific challenges on their nurseries.
I have been demonstrating and advising customers on the use of the new liquid formation of our H2Gro wetting agent since its launch in early 2017. It makes a great visual demonstration using jiffy plugs - which are notoriously difficult to wet up.
My simple demonstration compares the uptake of plain water compared to a solution of 0.15 ml of H2Gro liquid in 100ml of water. Two jiffy plugs are sat in two small dishes – into one I pour the plain water (containing a marker dye to make it visible) and in to the other the H2Gro solution (also containing the dye). The solutions both sit half way up the plugs.
The plug sat in H2Gro solution wets up and expands to its full wetted size within seconds. In stark contrast, the plug sitting in plain water takes up to 15 minutes to achieve the same result.
I am finding H2Gro liquid can play an important role in several challenging nursery situations. For example, in spring helping to kick start early spring hardy nursery stock and herbaceous growth through aiding the initial wetting up of plugs. Generally grown as dry as possible through the winter, at first watering it can take several attempts to get plugs sufficiently wetted up to apply liquid feed. This can be overcome by adding 1 litre of H2Gro liquid to 10 litres of water (stock solution) and applying with the first liquid feed using a dosatron (or similar) set at 1:100.
Another role is helping to maintain basket and container quality, both along the supply chain and in the final position in the garden or amenity setting. Watered on prior to dispatch, at the same rate of 1 litre per 10 litre of water (stock solution with dosatron set at 1:100) will ensure the baskets and containers wet up quickly for the end user and making the most of any rainfall or limited irrigation.
Other uses for H2Gro liquid include nurturing plants grown along the sides of glasshouses and polytunnels, areas where crops tend to dry out more quickly. Also, using the lower rate of 150ml in 10 litres (stock solution with dosatron set at 1:100) H2Gro liquid has a role to play with freshly stuck cuttings, prior to misting irrigation. This liquid formulation can also be used to aid the efficacy of some nematode biologicals controls (check with ICL for compatability).