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Mask for spraying?

Posted by Josh Willis 
Mask for spraying?
August 30, 2021 04:31AM
Here's one I've been meaning to ask for a while. Does anyone wear PPE / respirators while doing a holistic spray?

The ingredients are obviously less noxious than conventional sprays. Yet it's not the sort of thing you exactly want to take a mist shower in...generally not what your lungs are meant to be breathing. Adding some Bt or Spinosad to the mix is something else I'd rather not have in my lungs, if possible, I suppose?

I used to think it was pretty easy to avoid the droplets. But then I watch someone else spray, and I can see the droplets stay suspended in the air for longer than I'd think. Those of us with mister blowers probably really notice this effect, but I've also noticed it with my Solo.

Anyways -- just curious what some of the more experienced hands say -- no biggie? And/or if you wear a respirator, what do you use? I've usually grabbed an N95 dust mask (back when those were available) b/c it seems like a compromise between "not caring" and "take it seriously"...but of course those are specifically not rated for oil-based droplets. Meanwhile, wearing a P95 (rated for oil) seems over the top for a low-key holistic spray.

Zone 7a in West-Central MD
Re: Mask for spraying?
August 30, 2021 08:01PM
I have a half-mask respirator that I've long considered essential when doing construction, be it urethane fumes or avoiding demolition dust or general sanding. The organic vapor cartridges can be fitted with an N95 dust pre-filter and outer cover... so this makes it quite functional for orchard spraying as well. Admittedly it's a rare spray application when I do this, primarily refined clay coverage with a tank-mixed biological. Wind is the significant factor as generally I feel I can avoid the spray plume with a hydraulic sprayer using a handheld gun. I originally got this respirator at a local auto parts store but here's an online source: https://www.envirosafetyproducts.com/survivair-premier-s-series-halfmask-respirator.html

Lost Nation Orchard
Zone 4b in New Hampshire

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 09/04/2021 01:53PM by Michael Phillips.
Re: Mask for spraying?
September 04, 2021 07:49AM
In my limited experience I’ve worn the n95 for all kaolin sprays, (my potter friends all mask up when handling their powdered clays, too, cancer risk.) I don’t trust neem or any of the heavier og spray additives in my lungs either. Problem with all of these environmental exposures is it can take the better part of a lifetime to find out it was a bad idea not to protect ourselves.
Re: Mask for spraying?
September 15, 2021 01:14AM
Thanks, all -- that's good to hear your approaches as a basis for comparison.

I'd searched before for dispoable P95's and never found them...but just tried again and sure enough they are there after all. I think for the home grower / small orchardist, these disposable P95s are a good solution.

Michael, the envirosafetyproducts.com website is a great resource to have - thank you!

Zone 7a in West-Central MD
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