How to Mix Atrazine

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Mixing Atrazine Requires Strict Adherence to Instructions
Mixing Atrazine Requires Strict Adherence to Instructions (Image: güllefass image by Bergmeister from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>)

The herbicide atrazine is an odorless chemical used in grassy weed management on large farms and agricultural propagators. It is soluble in water and comes in a white powder. Atrazine is under careful control by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and only trained personnel can obtain, mix and dispense it in strict adherence with the rules that apply to the product. It is used on over 65 percent of the corn and grain sorghum crops in the United States. Without atrazine the loss to farmers from reduced crop yield would be an estimated $1 billion, according to the University of Missouri Extension.

Things You'll Need

  • Herbicide sprayer(s)
  • Herbicide mixers
  • Water
  • Gloves, masks, other protective equipment
  • Atrazine bags
  • Precise measurement scales or dry volume indicator for exact amount of each setting application.

Follow the instructions on the package. Atrazine is mixed with water. Mix only what is needed for your setting. Do not add more than the package calls for in order to avoid contamination of the groundwater. Avoid application in heavy rains to keep runoff to a minimum. Also, tillage will assist in curbing the amount of atrazine lost to runoff.

Maintain buffer zones of 100 feet or greater when mixing atrazine. Calibrate your pressuring equipment to ensure accurate mixes of atrazine and water in your tank. Make sure you use the 100-foot buffer rule for any farm ponds, wells, sinkholes, standing water, reservoir, stream, marsh or wetland, river or lake.

Dispose of empty herbicide bags by reading instructions on the package. Triple rinse any contaminated equipment and spray equipment backwash into the tank. Avoid any spillage on the ground or other surfaces. Mix only what is needed for your immediate application. Do not let rinse water run onto the ground because it is a hazardous waste. Prevent back-siphoning by keeping the end of the water fill hose above the water level in the spray tank at all times.

Tips & Warnings

  • Keep all atrazine products together and sealed in plastic. Clearly mark and keep them out of the way of children and animals.
  • Keep up with the latest information from your agricultural agent and farm bureau for updates on atrazine and its application.
  • Do not apply in high winds where the stream can not be controlled. Heavy rain will cause product to be carried away from the point of application.
  • Avoid smoking or eating when applying atrazine.
  • Since 2004, the European Union has banned the use of atrazine. It has poisonous effects on humans, including endocrine effects, carcinogenic and low sperm counts. It is considered a hazardous waste, according to the United States and state laws.

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