The effect of oxyethylene (OE) chain length of three homologous series of nonionic surfactants (allinol, nonoxynol, octoxynol) on glyphosate uptake was markedly affected by the leaf surface fine-structure of sugarbeet and kohlrabi. Adaxial leaf surfaces of sugarbeet were covered with a layer of amorphous wax, whereas the adaxial surface of kohlrabi leaves was covered with fine crystalline wax. Foliar uptake of glyphosate (1 mM glyphosate, 20 mM glycine, pH 3.2) averaged 4% for sugarbeet without surfactant, but droplets were not retained by kohlrabi leaves in the absence of a surfactant. Glyphosate absorption with octoxynol (9 to 10 OE units, 0.5 g L−1) was rapid initially (0 to 2 h) and leveled off about 2 h after application in both species. Absorption by sugarbeet decreased from 12 to 3% as OE content of octoxynol was increased from 5 to 30 OE units. In contrast, surfactants of intermediate OE content (octoxynol, 16 OE units) induced the greatest uptake (17%) on kohlrabi. Leaf wetting was markedly affected by surfactant and leaf surface. As OE content of octoxynol increased from 5 to 30 OE units, droplet/leaf interface areas of 1-μl droplets decreased from 4 to 3 mm2 on the adaxial leaf surface of sugarbeet and from 61 to 2 mm2 on kohlrabi. Concurrently, the rate of droplet evaporation (1 μl) decreased from 1.0 to 0.7 nl s−1 on sugarbeet and 4.2 to 0.5 nl s−1 on kohlrabi leaves. The effect of OE content on enhancement of glyphosate uptake and wetting characteristics of spray solutions was similar within species for different hydrophobic moieties but differed markedly between species.