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Application

Application procedures for current tree growth regulators (TGRs) like Profile 2SC have been simplified but, as with any application, the applicator is the key to success. Proper application of Profile 2SC will ensure even distribution and uptake in the treated tree. In addition, accurate tree identification, measurement and precise dose determination are key to a successful treatment. Without these basic skills, Profile 2SC may be improperly applied, resulting in little or no response or over-regulated trees that may develop small leaves and exhibit little or no growth.

Once a trained and competent applicator is familiar with the process for properly utilizing Profile 2SC, application via soil injection will prove to be a quick and easy, typically three- to five-minute procedure per tree requiring the following simple steps:
  • Identify the tree and measure it properly.
  • Properly dilute Profile 2SC to make the standard treatment solution. Follow label and rate card instructions.
  • Determine dose in total milliliters required for the application rate and tree size based on diameter-at-breast-height (dbh). Then measure the treatment solution properly.
  • Apply the mixture with the proper application equipment.
Application

Depending on factors such as environmental conditions, the location, number and proximity of trees to be treated and your treatment budget, you can currently choose between two equally effective methods of applying Profile 2SC (the third alternative will be available in the near future);
  • Basal soil drench
  • Soil injection
  • New tree microinjection technology currently under development by SePRO
Each method is covered in detail below. Before applying, however, the correct rate and dosage needs to be determined with tree identification and measurement, location, crown volume, soil type and the tree's final ideal appearance.

Tree Identification and Measurement

Profile Jug
It is important that applicators are familiar with the tree species in their region that will be treated. A thorough knowledge of tree identification and aboriculture will help an applicator to determine whether or not a tree can be treated with Profile 2SC and how much of the product is necessary. After an accurate identification and measurement, the Profile 2SC species/rate card will indicate the dosage required for an effective treatment. It is important to note that while treatment of some trees is prohibited by the product label, other tree species may be unlisted but not prohibited. These trees can be treated by using rates for similar species and following all other label directions.

For the purpose of application with Profile 2SC, the diameter of a tree is measured 4 ½-feet above the ground and is termed the "diameter at breast height," or dbh. A proper measurement can be accomplished in a few simple steps. Next, using a dbh tape measure, wrap the tape around the girth of the tree being careful not to twist the tape. Be sure to use the dbh side - not the inches side that would give you a measure of circumference instead of diameter - and start your measurement at the tape index mark to get a correct assessment of the tree's diameter.

A variety of unique situations may arise that will require some measuring ingenuity. For example, be sure to stand on the upslope side of the tree if you're on an incline. If the tree is growing at an angle, measure at a right angle to the lean of the trunk. When swellings, bumps or branches occur at breast height, the diameter should be measured at an equal distance above and below 4 ½ feet and the two measurements averaged. For trees with multiple stems at breast height, add up the measurements of each stem and compare the total to the measurement below the fork. Base the application rate on the lesser dbh measurement. Finally, for a large tree with a dbh greater than those listed on the rate card, simply double the rate for a tree half its size. For example, treat a tree measuring 40 dbh at twice the label rate for a 20-dbh tree.

Mixing

Measurement
In preparation for application, determine the tree species. Then, an accurate measurement of the diameter at breast height (dbh) is necessary in selecting the appropriate rate of Profile 2SC.
SePRO's two-sided Profile 2SC rate cards feature mixing instructions on one side and rate guidelines on the other. Rate cards must be customized for particular geographic regions to account for different tree species and soil types. You can get a customized rate card by contacting a SePRO representative. The rate card will help you determine the correct dose based on the tree's species, dbh, location, crown volume, soil type and its final ideal appearance. Once you've established the correct dose, it's time to properly measure and mix the treatment solution. It's important to always shake the container first to ensure that the contents are thoroughly mixed. If you wish to mix a small batch, mix 317 milliliters of Profile 2SC with enough water to produce one gallon of ready-to-use solution. A larger batch of 12 gallons can be produced by mixing one gallon of Profile 2SC with 11 gallons of water.

The addition of a suspension aide to the mixed treatment solution is strongly recommended as it will make applying Profile 2SC even easier. It will reduce hard packing at the bottom of the tank and lessen the amount of agitation required to keep the solution in suspension. A suspension aide is particularly recommended with larger quantities or if the solution may sit for a period of time since the solution with the additive can easily be resuspended by agitation. Add the suspension aide at a rate of ¼- to ½% to half of the total water needed and stir (check the adjuvant label for the proper mixing sequence). Be sure to accurately measure the additive since too much can make the solution too viscous. Add the Profile 2SC and the remaining water. At this point, a ¼% high quality non-ionic organosilicate surfactant may also be added to the solution. It will lower the surface tension of the solution for applications to medium texture and heavy clay soils. This surfactant addition can improve product efficacy, especially in heavier soils as it will aid uptake by spreading the solution further through the soil to the tree's roots.

Application Methods and Equipment

Basal Drench

Rate Card
Customized Rate Cards for your region are available by contacting your SePRO representative.
Basal drench, also called soil drench, is a relatively simple and easy application procedure that does not require specialized equipment. A trench is dug completely around the base of the tree at the point of contact between the soil and the tree trunk, approximately 2 to 3 inches deep and 3 to 4 inches wide. An application device that provides a controlled rate of flow may be used, if desired, or simply a container with a graduated measurement scale. The recommended dosage of Profile 2SC is uniformly poured around the base of the tree onto the tree trunk/soil interface and allowed to run down the interface until it is absorbed into the soil. After the product is fully absorbed, the excavated soil is returned to the trench. For trees growing on a slope, segment the trench with "dams" to prevent the applied product from pooling in lower areas of the trench or opt for a soil injection application.

Soil Injection

Basal Drench Method
Basal Drench Method
With soil injection, Profile 2SC should be injected into the soil with specialized injection equipment at approximately 150 psi. Apply 6 inches below the soil surface in 250 ml aliquots uniformly around the tree (or as directed by the rate card) within 8 inches of the base of the tree for most medium and large size trees. Injection orifices should be oriented to release the diluted product horizontally at the point of injection. The required dose should be divided evenly among injection sites spaced as uniformly as possible around the tree trunk. The injection sites should be positioned to release the diluted Profile 2SC mixture as close as possible to the point of contact between the soil and the unthickened bark beneath the soil so that the active ingredient may be readily absorbed by the tree. For example, after the solution is injected into the soil, it is absorbed through the less suberized roots just below the soil line. Here the bark is more permeable to Profile due to a thinner cork layer. In addition, breaks in the outer root tissue created by normal growth processes provide pathways to the xylem.  Injection sites should also be located next to buttress roots. For trees less than six inches dbh, use at least four evenly spaced injection sites per tree.

Soil injection of Profile 2SC requires specialized injection equipment that has been designed and tested to deliver the solution as described above. Training is necessary to operate the injector and accompanying metric flowmeter properly. Whenever the injector is used, the flowmeter needs to be calibrated to make sure it's in range. To check equipment calibration, inject eight shots of 250 ml into a container. Then check the applied volume with a graduated cylinder. The injected volume should be within 5-8% of 2000 ml. If the flowmeter is off more than 8% of 2000 ml (160 ml), return it to Dill for calibration. Check the flowmeter three times per week or even daily with heavy use. Keep in mind that operating a soil injector is not like pumping gas. The solution must be flowing wide open to allow the flowmeter to get an accurate measurement. Don't start and stop the injector as you reach the desired cutoff amount. If you're a little over or under on one injector site, make up for it on the next one.

An innovative soil injector now offered exclusively by SePRO Corporation is substantially lighter and more durable than previous units and features a flared probe to reduce blow back. It also features a detachable hand grip that makes application on trees with low hanging branches much easier as well as offering the opportunity to make foliar spray applications with the supplied interchangeable nozzles. This new unit is delivered as a ready-to-use, turnkey injector that will quickly get you in the business of soil injection. For more information, contact your SePRO representative.

Tree Microinjection

Tree microinjection will offer the ability to treat trees where soil treatments are not practical. Although currently under development, recent advancements in technology have led to significant improvements in this application method verses previous tree microinjection options. The new system combines advances in chemistry development with a highly portable, convenient, all-in-one unit that delivers ultra low dose applications without the need to drill holes. When this new technology is complete, the Profile 2SC website will be updated with all relevant information.

Choosing an Application Method

Environmental conditions, location limitations, budget and equipment availability will determine which application method to choose. In general, one application method offers no major treatment advantage over the other although you can treat more trees per day using soil injection for higher productivity. Whatever method is employed, it usually only takes one applicator with proper training to treat a tree.

Soil injection places the Profile 2SC mixture close to the roots, prevents runoff and aids in dispersing the product. It's the quickest, easiest and most popular application method when many trees in close proximity are to be treated and when treating a large number of trees. A skilled applicator usually can treat 2 to 3 times the number of trees using soil injection versus a basal drench application.

Basal drench usually offers the most uniform tree regulation since it is applied evenly around the base of the tree, versus spot application with soil injection. Also, basal drench requires no extra equipment and is ideal where trees are not relatively close together and in remote settings. It is a very effective choice when a limited number of trees are to be treated or when using soil injection equipment becomes impractical. Due to the simplicity of a basal drench application, an experienced and trained crew or tree professional already on site performing other tree-related functions could easily perform this procedure.

Basal drench applications should be avoided on hilly terrain where the solution cannot be contained in the trench or may be unevenly applied. Also avoid using basal drench in other areas where the Profile 2SC mixture may be washed away from the base of the treated tree by rainfall or irrigation. If conditions exist that make basal-drench applications impractical such as steep slopes, surface-soil compaction, thick thatch or root matting, then soil injection may be considered. Soil injection may also be the application of choice in areas such as fine turf where trenching is not practical for aesthetic reasons.

Soil Type

Heavy clay soils, acidic soils and soils with high organic matter are more binding and will lead to reduced uptake. These soils shorten the length of time growth reduction occurs and require higher application rates. Sandy soils, on the other hand, allow for quick uptake of Profile 2SC into the tree and will increase the length of time growth reduction occurs. Lower application rates may be necessary with sandy soils. Finally, soil type will affect your treatment method as well. For example, compacted soils that make digging and injection difficult may require tree microinjection in lieu of a soil treatment.

Timing of Application and Trimming

Profile 2SC applications can be made throughout the year, weather permitting, except when the soil is frozen or saturated with water. However, Profile 2SC will be absorbed by a tree's roots and travel to the crown only during periods of active transpiration. So when Profile 2SC is applied early during a tree's active growth period, regulation effects may be evident that growing season. Most trees complete a majority of their growth six to eight weeks after the leaves have formed. Conversely, if applications are made after fall leaf drop, little uptake of Profile 2SC will occur until bud break in the spring.

Caring for trees can require frequent and costly pruning which, when a tree is in a hazardous location such as under power lines, can be dangerous. Pruning usually takes place less often with the use of a TGR and, for utilities, can decrease tree related outages. It's important to understand that the use of Profile 2SC will not replace pruning as it doesn't stop growth in treated trees. Profile 2SC slows growth, allowing for easier and less pruning. You'll see the most immediate benefits on fast-growing trees that are costly to trim. Profile 2SC is also ideal to control the "hot spots" or "cycle busters"along power lines and in locations where minimal intrusion on owners' property is desired.

Idealy treatment should occur before or at the time of trimming during the growing season. Trimming signals the tree to grow and can encourage uptake of Profile 2SC.

If it is necessary to apply during a tree's dormant season, delay trimming until the active growth period in the spring for optimal transpiration and product uptake.

No matter when Profile 2SC is applied, trees may not exhibit visual regulation signs for up to one growing season after treatment. This gives you the flexibility to treat and trim or trim and treat during the same season or following season. When making trimming decisions, keep the following two factors in mind:
  • Efficacy-When timing treatments for best efficacy, you should trim the trees one to three months following application. This allows the existing leaves time to pull the growth regulator to the crown during periods of active transpiration before you trim, thus reducing some of the resurgent growth. However, you should not consider all growth bad. Some growth is helpful in reducing sun scald on susceptible species.
  • Aesthetics-You may want the trees to look visually pleasing. When timing treatments for aesthetics, trim and treat at approximately the same time. This scenario removes leaves necessary to pull the product to the growing points. So, regrowth is initially not inhibited, allowing the tree normal growth before regulation engages.
Trees to Avoid

Tree species, diameter and crown size figure into the decision of whether a tree should be treated with Profile 2SC. Generally, only healthy trees that are well established in their final location with trunks measuring at least 4 inches dbh are good candidates. However, smaller trees that are nearing utility lines and trees on fencerows can be treated. Trees not used for food production that are not specifically listed on the product label may be treated if all other directions are followed.

Research shows that trees treated with Profile 2SC may have a better ability to survive fungal diseases and to withstand environmental stresses like drought, pollution and temperature extremes. From this work, it appears that by reducing tree stress, Profile 2SC may give a tree greater ability to withstand these stress factors.

Nevertheless, there are a variety of conditions that make trees bad candidates for treatment with Profile 2SC. A TGR treatment may not help every tree in decline. If a tree is in an advanced state of decline, it's best not to apply Profile 2SC as the treatment - or any other endeavor such as trimming - may be the action that pushes the tree over the edge. In general, do not apply Profile 2SC to trees in poor overall condition. Trees that are severely stressed due to moisture, temperature, low soil fertility, or mechanical or chemical injury should not be treated. In addition, trees exhibiting the following characteristics should not be treated:
  • Premature leaf drop
  • Leaf discoloration
  • Trees with large wounds or open cavities
  • Lightning strikes
  • Dead portions of crown
  • Evidence of disease
  • Trees that are or will be tapped for sugar
  • Fruit or nut trees to be used as food within one year of application
  • Trees in areas with low rainfall that are not irrigated may not get regulated due to the lack of transpiration and product uptake.
Retreatment

Profile 2SC should not be reapplied until symptoms from previous applications have begun to subside. Length of control may last anywhere from two to eight years, but will vary based on tree size, health, species and location as well as trimming activity, soil type, climate and the timing and dosage of the previous application.

When a tree's growth is actively being controlled, there will be diminished stem elongation during the growing season, newly-developed leaf internodes will be closer together on the branch, or "stacked," and new leaves may be smaller and darker. Before retreating, examine the tree for visible evidence that the previous treatment is wearing off.

Look for the aforementioned effects to gradually wear off with each growing season. If the degree of stem elongation is increased, the leaf internodes are developing farther apart and/or the newest leaves are larger and lighter in color, retreatment may be necessary.

The best perspective to observe the visual results of Profile 2SC to determine retreatment is at the top of the crown, where the newest growth occurs and product uptake is most extreme. If Profile 2SC no longer appears to be active in reducing growth and the tree is in good health, re-treat the tree at the same rate as the original application.

Record Keeping

Accurate record keeping is of extreme importance in any good tree management program. Not only do regulatory agencies require you to maintain data on every tree you treat, but your business will benefit from keeping detailed records. By utilizing SePRO's Profile 2SC Application Log Sheets, you'll track data that will help you determine the efficacy of your treatments and you'll create a resource that will help guide your future course of action with each tree you treat.

Soil Injection Method
Soil Injection Method
The log sheets, available from your SePRO representative or by printing out the Log Sheet, will help you keep track of each tree's location, species, dbh, treatment method, rate, date of application, health, etc. Over time, you can track growth reductions, how long trim cycles are extended, and the cost savings of controlling the frequency of cutting and pruning with Profile 2SC.

General Use Precautions
  • Apply at recommended rates and follow safety procedures.
  • Trees not used for food production that are not specifically listed on the product label may be treated if all other directions are followed.
  • Trees that are severely stressed due to moisture, temperature, low soil fertility, or mechanical or chemical injury should not be treated.
  • Do not reapply Profile 2SC until symptoms from previous applications begin to subside.
  • Basal drench and soil injection application of Profile 2SC may result in localized, temporary discoloration of turfgrass immediately adjacent to the treatment site.
  • Avoid basal drench applications on slopes or other areas where Profile 2SC or treated soil may be washed away from the base of the tree by rainfall or irrigation.
  • Treatment of trees bordered by shrubs and/or herbaceous ornamentals may cause these plants to be affected of their roots extend into the treatment zone.
  • Do not treat sugar maple trees or any other trees that are or could be tapped for sugar.
  • Do not treat nut or fruit trees that will be harvested within one year.
  • Do not apply Profile 2SC through any type of irrigation system.
Log Sheet
Log Sheet

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