Cellulose Acetate and Cardanol Based Seed Coating for Intraspecific Weeding Coupled with Natural Herbicide Spraying

Date of publication 3 August 2020

Authors Friuli, Marco; Nitti, Paola; Cafuero, Luca; Prete, Alessia; Zafar, Muhammad Shajih; Madaghiele, Marta; Demitri, Christian.

Sources Journal of Polymers and the Environment :

DOILink https://doi.org/10.1007/s10924-020-01821-9


Agricultural pesticides can become persistent environmental pollutants and their use is destined to be reduced. Consequently, weed control is shifting to green products and strategies. A combined approach, made of pelargonic acid based herbicide spraying and interspecific competition (i.e. seeding of plants species competing for growth against weeds) could boost the weeding effect. In case of the contemporary seeding and spraying, needed to reduce costs, seed coating is necessary as barrier to herbicide toxic effects but, at the same time, the coating has to be endowed with the right features to allow germination. This work aims to verify the feasibility of using cellulose acetate/cardanol (CA/Card) as seed coating polymer-plasticizer blend and to identify possible relationship between material features and germination rate. For these purposes, untreated and pelargonic acid herbicide treated coated seeds coated through solvent evaporation methods (CA/Card ratios from 0/0 to 100/0) were subjected to germination test. Coatings were characterized through SEM, EDX, media uptake, DSC and mechanical analysis with and without conditioning in seeding conditions. Germination test showed that 70/30 seeds, treated and untreated with herbicide, presented the best germination rate. Germination assays showed that coating presence reduced and slowed (without stopping) seeds germination equally with and without herbicide treatment. Consequently, was possible to conclude that CA/Card coatings allowed germination and presented a barrier effect against herbicide. Thus coating resulted suitable for seed coating in herbicide spraying/interspecific combined applications. No strong correlations were found between material features and germination, but it is plausible to hypothesize that both water absorption and mechanical properties of the coating play an important role and have to be optimized to improve germination rate avoiding difficulty in sprouting. Finally, the study opened a new perspective in the use of cellulose acetate for seed coating from waste sources such as cigarette filters. [GRAPHICS] .

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