Defoliant and desiccant
Crafts, Alden S. Department of Botany, University of California, Davis, California.
Last reviewed:January 2020
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Defoliants are chemicals that cause leaves to drop from plants; defoliation facilitates harvesting. Desiccants are chemicals that kill leaves of plants; the leaves may either drop off or remain attached; in the harvesting process the leaves are usually shattered and blown away from the harvested material. Defoliants are desirable for use on cotton plants because dry leaves are difficult to remove from the cotton fibers. Desiccants are used on many seed crops to hasten harvest; the leaves are cleaned from the seed in harvesting.
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