Frequently Asked Questions
What should I use in my sponge weed wiper?
The most common product to use in a wiper is Glyphosate. The manufacturing label recommends a 33% mix rate, however, please follow your label for mix rates in a wiping applicator/contact herbicide applicator. It’s important to remember that the ratio of herbicide to water can vary depending on the weeds to be controlled, the time of year, and the temperature. Contact your chemical field rep or extension service for best herbicide mix and or surfactant for specific weed and crop conditions.
If you are trying to control Glyphosate resistance weeds follow the label for Paraquat. The label, in most states for controlling Palmer Amaranth, is listed at a 50% mix rate. However, always follow the label.
If you are an organic grower and/or need a, "non-chemical" weed control product, We highly recommend a new product called Weed Slayer by Agro Research International. Weed Slayer is an organic, systemic, non-selective weed herbicide. We have been in the weed control business for over 35 years and have never seen anything like this. We tested this ourselves side by side against Roundup and 20% acidic vinegar. We found that Weed Slayer out performed Vinegar on all scales, and that it performs as well as Round-up and in most cases even a little faster. We are planning to have Weed Slayer available to our dealers and in local lawn and garden stores before the end of the year.
Please talk with your field consultant or chemical rep for application rates, and refer to the label of the product you are using.
What about Round-up Resistant weeds?
There are now over 20 varieties of Round-up Resistant Weeds worldwide. So if you have resistant weeds like Marestail and Pigweed, using other chemicals like Gramoxone and 2-4-D, through our sponges may be necessary. Gramoxone by Syngenta is labeled for use in cotton, beans and peanuts in most states at a 50% rate.
How do I control flow of chemical to the sponges on a pump fed unit?
Our "Top Crop" pump fed kits use the pump from your sprayer to start and stop flow to the sponges from a holding tank (typically not more than 25 gallons). Wipers use far less chemical than sprayers so a larger tank is not required.
To understand the concept of weed wiping it is important to know that weed wiping is an art, not a science. What we mean by this is...every situation will have a different weed infestation level. Some fields may only have patches of weeds and some fields may have more weeds than crops. So, there is not a, "gallons per acre" recommendation, speed, or PSI to run the pump at.
Bottom line...you need to get the maximum amount of product on the weeds without dripping on the crop/grass below. The sponge holds far more product than a rope, canvas, or carpet. However, the applicator must watch the sponge when the pump is on to determine when it is full. Then simply turn the pump off until you determine that the sponges are not getting enough on the weeds.
How fast should I drive?
It is important to drive around 5 miles per hour and lower the boom to gain maximum coverage without wiping the crop or grass below.
Should I wipe on the front or back of the vehicle?
We have models for both options. The benefits of wiping in front would be that all the weeds will make contact with the sponge and you can easily see how much material is in the sponge. If you have the wiper in the back, the weeds that your tires run over will not be killed. Many people may ask if the chemical can go from the weeds to the tires and then to the plants below…but historically we haven’t seen this happen.
Can I attach the sponge to my current sprayer?
Yes. The sponges can easily attach to any existing sprayer boom and even tie into the nozzle bodies. Each 30" sponge section has a ¼" push to connect fitting to feed chemical into the sponge section. Simply find the closest nozzle body and use TeeJet part # QJ98588-1/4 and then attach a ¼" poly hose between the nozzle body and the sponge. The sponges are designed to feed evenly when using adequate pressure.
Is there any benefit for wiping in two directions?
This is typically not necessary when wiping out grasses, but when wiping a broad leaf that has heavy patches, wiping the opposite direction will increase your kill on plants that got, "shadowed" on the first pass.
What is the benefit of Sponge over Rope, Canvas, and Carpet applicators?
The simple answer is that our sponges apply more product directly to the weeds and retain more material that all the other methods of weed wiping. Please don’t just take our word for it. Many third party evaporators and universities have done studies that show this. You can also control/keep the applicator from dripping easier with a sponge wiper.
How do I get the most life out of the sponges?
We have been making weed wipers for over 30 years. We encourage you to wash them out well after using them and then store them out of the direct sunlight. You can wipe many years and acres of life out of our sponges if they are properly maintained.
What size pump will I need?
If the model you order doesn’t have a pump included please refer to the following chart:
Total Sponge length kits Minimum GPM pump required
5 ft. 1 GPM
10 ft. 1.8 GPM
15 to 30 ft 3 GPM
40 ft 3 GPM
60 ft and longer Need three 3 GPM (one for each 8-port manifold)
or a roller pump or cent./diaphram pump 10 GPM +