Field and laboratory studies were conducted to examine herbicide dissipation when applied to low density polyethylene (LDPE) mulch for dry scenarios vs. irrigation. Analytical chemical analysis was used for quantification. In field studies, halosulfuron, paraquat, carfentrazone, glyphosate, and flumioxazin were surface applied to black 32-μm-thick (1.25 mil) LDPE mulch. LDPE mulch harvest began 1 h after treatment (HAT) then continued every 24 h for five consecutive rain-free days after treatment (DAT) to determine the level of herbicide dissipation from the LDPE mulch surface. In a related study, treated LDPE mulch was harvested 1 HAT, then sprinkler irrigation was applied, followed by a sampling five HAT, then the same irrigation and sampling procedure was repeated every 24 h for five consecutive DAT. The order for half-life, as defined as time for 50% dissipation (DT50), varied by herbicide and method of dissipation for dry and irrigated studies. Data indicated that glyphosate and paraquat dissipation was rapid following irrigation. Glyphosate and paraquat DT50 were both 1 h in the irrigated study, but 84 and 32 h for the dry scenario, respectively. This indicated that glyphosate and paraquat could be removed from LDPE mulch with rainfall or irrigation, primarily due to their high water solubility. Halosulfuron and flumioxazin DT50 were 3 and 6 h in the irrigated study, and 18 and 57 h for the dry study, respectively. Carfentrazone DT50 was similar at 28 and 30 h for the irrigated and dry studies, respectively. This indicated that carfentrazone was adsorbed to the LDPE mulch, and irrigation water did not remove it from the LDPE mulch. Results from 14C-herbicide laboratory studies were similar to those from field studies for halosulfuron, glyphosate, paraquat, and flumioxazin.
Nomenclature: Carfentrazone; flumioxazin; glyphosate; halosulfuron; paraquat.