Insights On Aerial Application

Jul 05, 2019
Megan Hasenour | Marketing Communications Manager

Aerial application always creates some questions and concerns from local community members and homeowners. Aerial application involves the spraying of crops with crop protection products and plant nutrient products from an agricultural aircraft. Superior Ag, along with other ag retail companies utilize the use of aerial application.

What time of year does Aerial Application take place?

Contrary to what we think, there isn’t a certain day of the year when aerial application is done. For corn, aerial application takes place when it begins to tassel and for soybeans application is recommended when they are at R3 (full flower) to R4 (first pod). Farmers are faced with an important decision: Apply a plant health product to protect their crop from diseases or not to apply a plant health product to their crop?

Included in the tank mix of an aircraft, an adjuvant, which is a drift retardant, is added to the mixture to ensure the product goes where we want it to go and stays there. Aerial application of a plant health product will protect their crops from being infected with disease. And as we all are aware, this year’s crop season has been less than ideal for farmers. Therefore, anything they can do to protect their crop this year is extremely imperative.


About the Aircraft & Pilots

Aerial application is applied via helicopter or airplane. Superior Ag contracts the pilots and the airplanes/helicopters from local aerial companies. Trained application pilots are performing the application to local fields in the area. These pilots go through rigorous education testing, obtain many flying hours under the direction of certified trainers and receive their applicator certification. Before any application takes place, our team members visit DriftWatch and BeeCheck to ensure there are no specialty crops or bee hives in the proximity of a field that is scheduled to be applied with plant health products. If there are any acres in question, the field is put on hold until further investigation is done and, in some cases, farmers are denied requests for their fields to be flown.

This time of year, when the aircrafts are out and about in the community making applications, some questions may arise. It’s important for questions to get answered to eliminate fear, anxiety or what-ifs from local community members and home owners. That’s why we are providing emails that go directly to Superior Ag’s aerial application experts to help answer questions and concerns.

Jesse Uebelhor, Division Agronomist

Adam Messmer, Precision Ag Specialist


What are the benefits plant health products?

Read some recent blogs we have wrote on plant health products, to help you gain a better understanding.