Pesticide Strategy: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Hello, this is Charles Pinkston, and I’m the Regional extension agent here in Alabama. And we’re excited to welcome you to our webinar today in the all bugs good and bad. The webinar today is going be on
pesticide strategy the good the bad and the ugly. This is brought to you by the eXtension Communities of Practice of imported fire ants, Urban IPM, Pesticide Environmental Stewardship, and the Alabama Cooperative Exension System, and the University of Georgia Center for
urban agriculture. We are excited to have with us our speaker today, Kaci Buhl. Kaci is a senior faculty research assistant at Oregon State University, in the department for Environmental and Molecular Toxicology. She’s the coordinator for the National Pesticide Information Center, and she is going be talking a little bit more about her background as she does the presentation. I encourage you to if you have questions,
to respond in the chat box to the left of your screen. I’m going to turn it over to you now Kaci. Alright thank you for the introduction, this is Kaci Buhl. As questions come in on the chat box, I think we’re going to batch them up and deal with most of them towards the end. Unless something really jumps out at me. But I do have a pretty full presentation today, so I want to make sure I move through it at a good pace and be respectful of everyone’s time. And I’m so grateful for your time and
attention today thank you for showing up. They asked me originally to talk about
pesticide safety in just about an hour, and I thought how in the world am I going to cover that kind of broad topic in just an hour? So I’m going to talk about strategy, going from beginning to end as you approach your growing season in the garden, and as you move forward into the fall. So that’s the approach we will be taking. Most of my experience and background actually comes from working at the National Pesticide Information Center. I’ve worked there for over 10 years as a frontline specialist and as a coordinator, and I’ve talked to over 10,000 people myself over that amount of time. And I feel like I’ve heard it all, and I’m gonna share a lot of stories with you today. For those of you who haven’t met me, I wanted to show you a little bit and give you an idea of who’s talking. This is me, and in this picture I’m weaving together some rabbit fencing with some deer fencing. Just to underline the point that IPM is definitely my background. My master degree is in IPM, with an Entomology focus from Michigan
State. But I’ve been working with pesticides world for the most part since I graduated over 10 years ago. This presentation was built for people who might use pesticides in and around their home in particular with gardening, and the heroes who would advise them,
like eXtension agents and master gardeners. So I hope so you are with us today. I want to start with just a few slides, so you understand where a lot of my background comes from, because it comes from NPIC and what kind of questions we receive. And I’m also going to make the case through out the presentation, that I think extension agents and master gardeners can use our services, and also hand out our phone number when it’s relevant. We want to make sure you know what we do. We answer question about the health effects of pesticides, the environmental fate and properties of
pesticides. We answer questions about labels and
regulations, pest, and potential IPM strategy. Our mission is to be a source of science-based information, for anyone who inquires. We have a toll-free phone line that’s open eight to noon, and that’s on the west coast. If you’re on the east coast, that’s at 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Friday, and we also respond to emails, voicemail, and social media enquiries within one day. Overtime at our maximum we had up to
25,000 inquiries per year, and our web page is getting over five million views per year and that’s real human eyeballs. If you count web hits, which sometimes
can be computers coming in and hitting the server, that’s 32 million. So it’s very widely used and we’re proud of the website. I hope you have a chance to check out at some point. Now enclosing what do we do, we translate that technical information into plain language as best language as best we can. If you’re familiar with working with
pesticides or labels, sometimes they can be very difficult to interpret. We also recognize opportunity to prevent an incident. When we hear about exposure incidents, we document those in a database, and it’s usable by EPA and also states when they do risk assessment. And also when they do product registration, they can ask us what kind of incidents have been reported for this product, and how can we maybe address that with different label statements. So it’s kind of surveillance program, in addition to its role as an information program. We promote integrated pest management. I hope everyone on the line knows what that means, but you’ll hear a lot about it in this presentation today. Legal use practices and of course label
comprehension, There are some boundaries to bring up for the things that we don’t do. We can’t diagnose anyone’s symptoms. If someone calls and says, I think a have a headache because I was working with this pesticide, we can’t confirm or deny. Of course we’re not healthcare providers. We also don’t come up with straight up
recommendations for pest control strategies, or products, or ingredients. We take the approach of laying out a suit of options, so the caller can make up their own mind with the situation they have at hand. And of course we can’t do great big research projects for folks that want us to do that for them. Alright, now that you know a little bit
about the National Pesticide Information Center, and where all my interesting stories are coming from. Lets talk about what we’re gonna go over
today in this presentation. We’ll talk about inspecting your
inventory, planning your attack, selecting a pesticide, things to do before, during, and and after the application, that are good best practices. We’ll spend sometime on storage and disposal. We’ll touch again on the kind of ways that NPIC can help you and the people you serve. And will finish up the presentation with some true stories of horror, we’ve heard more than a few at the center and I’ll share some of those with you today. Alright, first let’s clarify our term, a lot of folks think the word pesticide
just means insecticide. And this isn’t an entomology focus crowd, but I’m sure many of you know that it actually much broader than that. And that all of these things are considered
pesticides under the law, and that includes things that repel, like repellent, pheromones that disrupt the mating of moths and other things, plant growth regulators. In this presentation I’m going to focus mostly on insecticides, herbicides, and fungicides, because they’re the most commonly used in the home garden. One of the foundational concepts about pesticides to begin with is that the label is the law. When you read your shampoo container and it tells you to reapply, you don’t necessarily follow that
direction because it’s not required. But with pesticide products, it’s a whole
different ball game. Every statement on that label is legally enforceable, and so it it must be followed. You’ll hear me repeat that throughout the presentation as well. Alright, now it’s February when we’re giving this presentation, and it’s a time of year that’s so exiting. We are pouring over seed catalogs,
cleaning up our tomato cages, dreaming of the next growing season. Well I argue it’s already time to get busy on your pest control strategy, and also your pesticide safety regimen. We are going to start with inspecting your inventory. First don’t separate pesticides from their labels if you possibly can. It’s pretty frustrating that so many labels actually come in detachable pamphlets, because it’s very difficult to reattach them to the product’s package. But if you can use a binder clips, or rubber bands, or staples, those kind of things to make sure they stay together. Please do that. If you find things in your shed that look
like this picture on the left, and you can’t tell at all what’s in that bottle. You may have to treat it like household hazardous waste, we call that HHW around here. We have list for every state, there’s a link there and if you go to that link and click on your state, there’s a like there for household hazardous waste and you can call that phone number. Typically what happens when you call that
phone number, is that there might be a collection event, coming up somewhere in your state in the next three months or sometimes six months. They’re not held very often, but when they’re held they are typically free events. So you can load up all the stuff in your shed you’re not sure about and take it down all at once. I’m going to mention this again a presentation, but lets pay attention to this for just a moment. Putting a milky substance into a milk jug where it’s separated from its label, is so dangerous. I can’t even explain how dangerous that is. If there were fire or there were a flood, and first responders had to come, they wouldn’t know what they were dealing with. They might even assume that it’s actually milk. Someone actually might mistake this for milk and pour some and take a drink. So this is a practice to pretty much outlaw in any of your sheds and in any in your clubs. This is not a practice that should be allowed. Okay moving forward. As your inspecting your inventory make sure to discard any containers that are bulging or bowed. There can be big changes to the product in storage overtime. Especially if your storage area is subject to freezing, or temperatures over 85 degrees. Usually on the pesticide product label in
the storage section, it says store in a cool, dry place and don’t subject it to high extreme temperatures. Things can change dramatically. Now when you’re in doubt about whether or not something might still be good. If it’s been in the shed for years and you can’t even remember when you bought that, look for an expiration date. Most pesticide products don’t have an expiration date on them, but you can call the manufacture and ask about shelf life. And they’ll follow up by asking you about any extreme temperatures that it has been exposed to. We also have a list of manufactures, because they don’t always put their phone numbers on the label. So we maintain a list of three or four hundred pesticide manufactures, and their toll free numbers on our website. Next if you’re going through your shed to inspect, inspect your PPE, your personal protective equipment. Dry conditions over the winter can actually make things brittle and cause them to crack. So even if they were perfectly functioning pieces of PPE last fall, they need to be inspected upon the spring time. Pay special attention to the themes. I’ve heard of stories over time where people say, I was using my gloves and I knew it was wet inside my gloves but thought it was sweat. Until you know a couple hours into my project, I finally took my gloves off to go have lunch, and I have red, rash skin only on one hand. Well that one hand had a hole in the
glove that they weren’t aware of. So pay special attention and look for holes, they can crop up on you before you realize it. If you do you ever have to use a respirator, there’s often a cartridge that has to be replaced at least once a year. So it’s a good time right now to go look at it, see what the serial number is on it, and order your new cartridge. Alright now that we’ve inspected everything, it’s time to sit down with a clipboard and plan your attack. First make a list of all your biggest pest problems last year. As you make your list you might think about things that were actually problematic. Things that you noticed that weren’t problematic, and ask yourself how much of those pest can be tolerated? Did it really impact your harvest so much that it would require spraying or some kind of intervention this year? If it’s an ornamental plant, did it impact your enjoyment of the garden
so much, that it justified buying a whole product or taking additional steps? As you make that list, also you might be listing plants that have been a problem for you every year since you put in that rose bush. And I put up a picture of roses with black spot because if you’ve got a rose bush that is susceptible to black spot, you’ve probably been dealing with it forever. And if you can tolerate the idea of replacing that rose bush with one that might be more resistant to black spot. it would reduce the pest pressure very much. So ask yourself those tough questions as your planning your attack. Next, when you’re thinking about last year’s biggest pest. Can you get out ahead of them with barriers or exclusions? This is a barrier that’s popular out in the
Northwest for cucumber beetles. Especially when plants are young and just seedlings, and there still that bright fresh green, and there so very susceptible, and so very delicious to beetles. If you can keep them covered up long enough, where they’re starting to put on some dark green growth and getting more vigorous. Then they can actually withstand more insect pressure, then they can when they are very, very young. So there might be a creative ideas you can think of for the major pests you dealt with last year. Next, read up, there are so many excellent resources out there from eXtension, from Master Gardeners. And many of those resources are specific to your state, you can even go and find a specific factsheet about the pest you have been dealing with in your state. And that’s so highly valuable, someone
wrote that has already been dealing with the problem. And they might know key issues of timing and other things to be aware of. If you can plan ahead and you know the
vulnerable life stage you are looking for, you might be able to head this off in the past. I put up a picture of Scales, because they do actually have a very susceptible life stage, and it’s a very young runner. When they hatch out and they’re moving to another spot on the branch, where they’re going to make their permanent home. They’re very susceptible to pesticide application, but also to a stiff stream of water that just knocks them off a twig, where they might not make it back to a position that will help them survive. I put a picture up of slugs as well. If you struggled with slugs in your vegetables last year, once they get up into the canopy of you vegetable plants, you kind of lost the battle in terms of using bait, if you think you want to use bait. There’s no reason for them to come down the plant and enjoy those bates on the ground, when they’re already in hog heaven up in the canopy of your vegetables. So that’s one that you can get out ahead of. And if you do you want to use bait for slugs and snails, I encourage you to think about putting them under a board. So that any pest or wildlife in the area can’t have ready access to it. It actually makes a nice trap for slugs and snails because they look for shelter as well. Alright now as you’re planning your garden, think about maximizing the airflow. That will reduce your disease pressure overtime. And when your first planting it looks very nice and open, but remember how very dense it can get when you get down to August and September. Many diseases are driven by the hours of leaf wetness, literally how many hours are the leaves wet. So if you plan your garden in such a fashion to help the dew dry as fast as it can, you’ll lower disease pressure. And one thing that folks have told me that’s helpful, is to orient your rows along with the prevailing wind in your area. So the wind will gently blow through the rows instead of being perpendicular to the rows. So that’s one idea. Alright, moving to the next section of our presentation today, selecting pesticides. First, the label must absolutely have the site of application listed. And when I say the site, if we’re talking about vegetables it has to have a specific type of vegetable plant listed. If you want to use it on tomatoes, it has to say tomatoes. If you want to use it on ornamental plants sometimes it will just be really broad and it might say all ornamental, but often it’s more specific and actually lists out the types of annual and perennials that can be treated with that specific product. If it can only be used indoors, it’s is not meant for you garden etc. Now with the pest, the label might actually list the pest that you’re looking for. And if it does you can be assured that the manufacturer has done some kind of testing at some point, and it was effective at killing that pest. But we know that pesticide resistance can develop overtime, so it’s no guarantee. And it’s prohibitive for them to test their pesticide product on every test that might be possible. We know there’s thousands of different insect species so it’s not required. But there is one exception to that, if you’re dealing with a vertebrate pest, a rodent, a mole, a gofer, you have to find a very specific species on the product label in order to use that product for that pest, that’s just for rodent and rodenticides. Now when you’re looking at the label also check for PPE. If you don’t wanna buy a chemical resistant apron, then don’t buy a product that requires you to wear one. That’s why it’s important to read the whole label while you’re standing in the store before you bring it home. Just to clarify something that a lot of folks have asked me over time, am I allowed to open up that label and peel back the hidden part of the label before I buy the product? The answer is yes. Absolutely. And it would be irresponsible not to, because you really need to read that label before you decide to bring it home, so feel free. And usually they stick right back on and if they don’t, well that was poor design but it’s not your fault. You still have to read the label. Another thing to consider as you’re looking at the label, is the signal word. Which can be a key to telling you how toxic the product is as formulated in the bottle. If the signal word is caution, that means it’s low in toxicity, warning means moderate, danger means high. We have a lot more specifics on our website about how these are derived. There are some rare products out there that don’t have a signal word at all, and typically that’s because they’re so low in toxicity, they are are exempt from most of the product registration requirements. But typically you’ll find one of these three words in all caps. And that’s that the way it applies to the product as a whole, not just the active ingredient but as a whole, including the solvent and everything else. Alright moving forward. Another thing to consider, is pest specificity. Some examples of pest specific products that I can share with you, Bacillus thuringiensis, if you get the var. kurstaki it only kills caterpillars that eat it. So that’s very specific and it would spare any ladybird beetles, or laced wings, or other beneficial organisms that are not in that family, the Lepidoptera. In fact, insecticidal soap is a little pest specific in a different way. It works best to kill soft bodied insects, like aphids and whiteflies. Whereas ground beetles or ladybird beetles
would be more resistant to this type of product. Now why do we want to think about pest specificity? Lets do a thought experiment. These leaves don’t necessarily reflect just leaves, it might be a whole plant and it might be your whole garden. So looking at the leaf all the way to the left, you have enough purple pest that you’re concerned about it, and you decide to go ahead and spray a broad-spectrum insecticide. You’ve had predators that were present as well, chewing, mowing down on all those purple pest. The surving predators after a broad-spectrum insecticide, often starve because they don’t have enough pest to keep them fed sufficiently for that population to grow. So predators a very often hit harder than the pest are by broad-spectrum insecticide for that reason. And when you picture what happens next,
pest have all the food they want. I mean they got all this plant material, so they start to rebound very quickly. Predator don’t have everything they need because there’s not an adequate pest population right away, so they lag behind. So often they describe this as pest resurgent The pest numbers can be higher than they
were before the pesticide application. So then you can find yourself in a position where you have to spray again when the resurgent happens. And possibly spray again and maybe get on one of those unfortunate treadmills, where you feels like you have no choice but to spray again and again. This can actually look different, let’s do a different version of this spot experiment. We know that it’s more complicated than that. Usually there’s more than one pest in the garden and more than one predator. So lets imagine in this case, that the red pest was pretty well under control, until you killed its predator. And what you sprayed for in the first place was the purple pest because that’s the really numerous one in your garden. But you knocked out the predator, the orange predators that we’re eating the red pest. The red pest might multiply faster and fill up the niche that was left by the purple pest. Sometimes you can have a pest resurgent that happens with a whole different pest. An example that happens a lot in the literature, is that you might spray for aphids but you have a resurgent with mites. Because this is a complicated system, and when you use a broad-spectrum insecticide, it’s really knocking out everything that gets sprayed, and not just the pest species. So what insecticides are broad-spectrum? Well most of them are essentially. The carbamates, like carbaryl, methomyl, the pyrethroids that are very popular for use in and around the home. The broad spectrum neonicotinoid which are becoming more popular for astemic insecticides in the garden. Those are very broad spectrum and particularly toxic to bees. And other insecticides like fipronil, pyrethrins, chlorfenapyr, some other ones, if you’re not sure, you can always read the label and see if there’s a big long list of insects killed by the product. And if it’s still uncertain you can always give us a call and there’s are eight hundred number again. Now let’s come back and think about this thought experiment one more time. The first one. You have all these purple pest and you decide to spray your broad-spectrum insecticide, you’re essentially saying to the predators you’re fired. I know you’re not gonna make it back to a population level that’s helpful to me and my garden, to keep the purple past under control. So you know what I’m going to take it from here. Essentially you’re taking over their role, so you might be in a position to have to spray again and again, as the pest population boom without having predator pressure. So if you do find yourself in a position to spray again and again, we have to talk about pesticide resistance. In pesticide resistance, you can think of it as just part of the genetic diversity of the pest population. The purple pest population, some of them may just be naturally resistant because there is diversity in that population. So the resistant ones represented by the red pest in this slide. So if you hit the population repeatedly with the same pesticide, it removes the susceptible individuals allowing the resistant few to dominate. And overtime the population becomes overwhelmingly resistant to the pesticide that you’ve been applying. I’m sure many are you listening to this can relate to some of the ideas here, that maybe a pesticide worked well early in the season, but further into the season it didn’t seem to do much at all and this is what could have been happening. So how do you address pesticide resistance? First, if a pesticide product failed to work in the past, we need to look it up and do some research because it’s possible you have resistance. These are three posters one for insecticide, fungicides, and herbicides, that put active ingredients into mode of action groups. So once you find the active ingredient for the product that has failed you. You can look in that group and you’ll see other active ingredients that will be just as useless to you, as the one that you have in your hand. Don’t bother trying another product in the same group, consider combination products that have active ingredients from more than one mode of action group. And if you need help, always you can call NPIC for help deciphering this stuff. I want to show you an example of this insecticide poster, and please don’t be intimidated. We can just ignore the molecular structures and focus in on the active ingredients, the name. Now I’m going to use a little I’m pointer here to help me out. So for example, if you’re using malathion to address a problem, or chlorpyrifos , or acephate which is a very popular systemic in the past, and it stopped working. Then you might as well not try carbaryl or methomyl or any else in group one, because resistance would be cost resistance or corestistant, because they both work on the same mode of action. Another example that often blows people’s minds, is if you’ve been working with pyrethroids and many of us do. Permethrin is the active ingredient we get most questions about here at our center. If you’re finding resistance to permethrin in your garden, those same bugs would be resistant to DDT. Because they both act on the same part of the nervous system, the sodium channels along the trunk of the axons in the nervous system. So one of the things that I hear often when people call about bedbugs, there desperate, they tried a lot of things
including pyrethroid. Nothing is working. I just need to get myself some DDT. It’s tough when I tell them actually if there resistant to pyrethroids, they will also be resistant to DDT. They’re in that same class. So I hope that demonstrates the idea of picking something in a different mode of action class. Alright. Moving on, more to think about with pest specificity. Lets talk about herbicides for a moment. Some kill broadleaf plants, and they are tolerated by grassy species. Others kill grassy species, and they are tolerated by broadleaf plants. The nonselective weed killers don’t care,
there just going to kill plant tissue on contact. And those are some examples of the nonselective weed killers provided right there. So, my shortcut for how to determine grassy versus broadleaf, is to look at the veins of the leaves. If there netted, most often you can assume that means broadleaf and if there parallel you can assume that means grassy. There’s of course some other things to tell monocots form dicots, but this is my quick shortcut for folks. Alright, picking the right weed killer, even more to think about. A pre-plant weed killer, is something that often they use to burn down and area and kill everything that’s there, but you want to be able to plant into that soil very soon afterwards. So it has to be some kind of herbicide that won’t be active on the sensitive little seeds that come afterwards. A preemergent herbicide makes a barrier on the top of the soil, it makes a blanket. Through which it’s very difficult for germinating seedlings to burst. When their tissue comes in contact with that barrier, the tissue is so sensitive and light green and barely you know making it already, that it doesn’t make it through that penetration phase. But even once we have a plant that’s at this stage, right here. A preemergence won’t work on it because it’s already penetrated through that blanket. Then you’ll be thinking about something for postemergence. And there’s some examples provided there. An established stand is even harder to kill so you’d be looking for different active ingredients in that respect as well. And I should clarify that any mention of these active ingredient or products specifically is not meant to be a recommendation or endorsement. I’m just throwing out examples to help illustrate the points. Now as you’re selecting pesticides another thing to consider, should I dilute the product, should I buy a concentrate, or buy one that’s ready to use? Well if you buy a concentrate there’s quite a commitment that you’re making. You might have to have a backpack sprayer, a BNG sprayer they call them a lot of different things. But you’d probably want to consider keeping one sprayer for herbicide or weed killers, and a whole separate one for insecticides. Plants are so very sensitive to herbicides
and weed killers. That even just the residue after you rinse out the sprayer, can be enough to damage plants when you come back later and try to apply an insecticide with the same sprayer. You might want to consider keeping dedicated measuring spoons and cups, and marking them pesticides only so no one takes them back in the kitchen and tries to use them for food. There is always necessary equipment maintenance with these kind of devices. So make sure to keep the manufacture’s instructions and follow those instructions for annual maintenance and cleaning. And plan ahead to avoid dealing with left over deluded pesticide. We’ll talk more about this in a bit, but trust me when I say it’s a pain to deal with left over deluded pesticide, if you don’t have a registered use sight to spray it out on. Now if you’re buying ready to use, well you know you’re going to be buying some water with your pesticide. And it can be considered more expensive but in some ways it’s also kind of the easy button. Also another thing to think about when you’re selecting pesticides, how much do you need? Buy only what you need this season. Many baits are formulated with food items, so they actually spoil. They have things like peanut butter or molasses in them that can go rancid if they are stored too long. So don’t take the approach that you’re going to buy enough for the next five years. Try to only buy what you need this season. You can avoid the uncertainty about shelf life that we talked about earlier, and the rig-a-ma-roll of handling disposal. And it also reduces the risk to the environment in case of a disaster. Remember also we talked about fires and floods before. If you have a big inventory in your shed and there’s a flood, a lot of that inventory is going to end up in the water the people need to walk through to find safe haven. And the same is true of fires, when you
have a fire it gets a lot of water sprayed on it. And then that water might be contaminated with your big inventory of pesticides. I put a picture of this particular product up as a reminder to read the label before you leave the store. I got caught on this one am not too long
ago. It looks like a shaker can that you would just kind of shake out from the container, but actually when I got home and read the label, it only takes about a table spoon of this stuff, for a whole treatment for the size of garden bed I was dealing with. Then I thought, man it’s going to take me ten years or more to use up this big container of pesticide. Make sure to read the label and estimate how much you’re going to need this season. Try to buy a smaller container if there is one available. Alright, so are you in love with your label yet? There’s so much good information on the label that you need to read before buying. A couple more things, just to repeat the site of application must be on the label. Considered the pre-harvest interval, sometimes it’s listed as a PHI and a lot of people don’t know what that means. But it means the time between the last application and the time you can harvest any fruits or vegetables said or grown on that plant. It can be very frustrating to use the product and then you want to harvest the next couple of days, but there’s a pre-harvest interval of two weeks and you have to watch your fruit as it starts to go to the flies, waiting for that PHI to be expired. Read the environmental hazard statements. You’ll find out if something is highly toxic to bees, or fish, or birds, and there’ll be important statements there to consider. Because you know when you’re standing in a store where you want to use it, and you can see if this is an appropriate product for that location. Also read the precautionary statements. I know I might be beating a dead horse, but honestly now, have you read the instructions? You must read the entire product label. Alright, and I wouldn’t be doing my job if I didn’t mention a great resources available in just about every state. Ask a master gardener, they probably deal
with the same pest that you have been dealing with, because they’re in the same state right there with you, sometimes in the same county. They might know key elements of timing that make it work in your area, or gift tricks that can help you avoid using pesticides at all. So to connect with your state’s master gardener program, we have a list, and our lists contains the contact information for coordinator of master gardeners in each state. It’s a place to start, but you can also just go Googling and search master gardeners in your state or county. Now we are getting closer to the point where we planned our strategy, we’ve been thinking it through, we’ve selected a pesticide, and now we’re getting ready to actually
apply. Lets do some planning first. Put this number in your cell phone or
near your phone, it’s easy to remember. It’s 3 two’s, a one, and 3 two’s, so it’s symmetrical on either side of that 1. 1-800-222-1222 Secure acces to water. And what I mean by that is just pull those hose over to the area where you’re going to mixing and loading. I’ve spoken to folks on the phone who said I was mixing and loading and accidentally touched my eye. And of course I touched both of them at the same time because I was wiping across my forehead, and then I had to stumble around the yard
looking for the hose and I couldn’t open my eye. So bring that over and secure access before you start mixing and loading. Make sure you you pick a spot that’s well ventilated for your mixing and loading are. And keep a bag of kitty litter in the storage area and the reason I bring this up is I’ve spoken to a lot of folks who accidentally spilled a concentrate or
some other kind of pesticide product, on the patio or the garage floor and it soaked in so quickly and it stunk for so long. And they’ll call asking, is there anything I
can do to neutralize that smell? And unfortunately the answer is no many of the times. So if you had kitty litter handy you can dump it on that spill really quick, and keep it from absorbing into the
materials. The day before you’re ready to spray if you don’t know how many gallons you’re going need from prior experience, spray the target area just as you would the next day but use plain water, to see how many gallons you’re going to need. That will help you avoid the problem of leftover diluted pesticide, if you are diluting. Alright, Now we are ready, survey the scene. Take a look at the area around your garden or your yard, were your planning to make the application. Identify the air intake for the home, a lot of times it’s on an air conditioner. Especially in the summer there’s a big air intake spot. You can just turn that off for the duration of the application, close windows and doors. Think about pet bowls, toys, bird baths, anything that people or animals might put their mouth on later, as a good idea to cover or remove. Be aware of the water table and the soil type. If you’re a gardener in this are you probably know how deep you have to dig to find water and whether your soils are sandy. That’s important to remember because some pesticides can be be a groundwater risk. That’ll be in the environmental hazard section of your label to keep in mind. Avoid spraying near storm drains or riparian areas. A riparian area is an area that’s really right up against a water body, it could be along a stream, ditch, or a pond. But it’s the area that slopes down to meet that water. And if you can avoid application in those areas it’s generally best for water quality if you do. Alright, we’re ready. We’re ready to get suited up. The minimum personal protective equipment that you need is long pants, long sleeves, shoes, and socks. So at no point is it a good idea to apply pesticides wearing a tank top, shorts, or flip-flops. It’s just unnecessary exposure. If you do use gloves don’t use the ones that you might be using for your other types of gardening if their leather or fabric, because they might be absorptive. And it’s kind of a worst-case scenario, if they get pesticide on them they’re holding that pesticide against your skin, and giving it maximum possibility of soaking in. If you’re going to be walking on a treated area as you go, consider wearing some dedicated shoes that won’t be used in the house again. That residue of course can be transferred to the shoes, and in this picture this guy is wearing rubber boots, that’s a particularly a good idea because (audio missing) Leather boots are particularly notorious for absorbing, especially organic contaminants around (audio missing) walking on the treated area. Now you’re getting ready. You’re mixing, you’re loading. Please make sure that kids and pets cannot access the area when you’re mixing, loading, or applying. Not that you just don’t think they’ll access or you’re going to keep an eye on the area, but that they cannot. You’ve closed the gate, you’ve tied up the dog on the other side of the house. That’s what I’m getting at. Because I’ve spoken to way to many people who were doing the mixing and loading outside and the phone rings. So they run inside and answer the phone and when they come back something horrendous has happened. Maybe the dog knocked over a bottle of concentrate on the patio, or maybe they’re eating all the bait that you were just getting ready to apply. So don’t let this happen to you. Make sure things are nice and locked down tight, before you’re ready to do your mixing and loading. Now as you get ready to do the mixing and loading read the label carefully again. Remember that dry ounces are not the same thing as fluid ounces. If you’re measuring dry ounces you need to use a scale to weight the material. If you’re using a fluid, then you would use a measuring cup. Some products actually come with their own measuring cup, and that’s because they’ve actually figured out how dense the product is. So they have done the conversion for you from weight to volume. And that measuring cup can then never be used for anything but that specific product, because it’s really dialed into that density. So make sure you’re paying attention to those packets when you measure. And use the rank that’s specified on the label. If you use more, it’s illegal and it could hurt your plant. If you use less it may not be effective. Unless you’ve had that experience in the past, but having to come back and do it again is more exposure potential and it could behave differently when applied at different times. This picture comes from the medicine world of pharmaceutical. So it’s a very similar concept with pesticides. There may be a narrow window between the effective dose or the therapeutic dose and the toxic dose. So as you’re mixing and very really hard to make sure you get the rate just as prescribed on the label, you might be aiming for a very narrow window. So I’m making the argument that you need to be really careful and get that rate just right. Alright, we’re ready. It’s time to spray. Now avoid applications to hard surfaces, if you’re near a sidewalk or near the side of a building, and that’s not your application site. Be careful not to spray those hard surfaces, because that can very easily run off those surfaces and also very much evaporate off those surfaces. So if you’re dealing with volatile herbicides it will volatilize off of hot surfaces faster and potentially damage plants nearby. Pesticides can easily run off. Position yourself up wind, whenever possible. I’ve also spoken to way to many people who got ready and who did everything right, (no audio) and the wind just blows the material (no audio) burning nose, burning eyes, and that’s no fun. So pay attention to the wind before you get started. And this slide speaks for itself. Just don’t do this. If the pesticide is falling down on your hat, that’s a bad idea. Don’t do this ever. Alright. Now after the application, right afterwards, wash your gloves before taking them off. If you wash them first, you can hang them up. They’re ready to dry and they’re ready for you to handle for next time. Keep footwear with residue outside. Put clothing in a separate basket away from other laundry. Take a shower. Now while you are in the shower you’ll be thinking to yourself very hard, now your sure that kids and pets can’t access the treated area right? I’ve just been told that the volume might have dropped off, let me see if I can do anything about it. I can move my mouthpiece a little closer, I hope that helps. Can someone say in the chat box if that is helping? Are you able to hear me a little bit better? Not greatly. I’m not sure what else I can do to change the situation, I’ll keep charging ahead. And hopefully those of you listening on your computer might be able to turn it up on your local speaker. Alright I’ve moved that just as close as I can and I’ll also speak up. Alright now after we have gone through all of those precautions of things you should be aware of. You might be thinking this doesn’t apply to me because I only use organic products. Well they are still pesticides. Essential oils can cause allergic reactions, burning eyes, and respiratory irritations. They can also be really hard on application equipment, so it’s still important to pay attention to how you are storing those. More applications might be required for some of the organic products, which can lead to higher exposures overtime. Especially if you’re not wearing PPE and applying those weekly or more. Even organic pesticides can be toxic to fish, or bees, or your plants at higher temperatures. And very often there are unknowns. Alright I’m gonna try something else, they’re saying using my phone without my headset. So I’ll switch to that, just a second. Alright can you folks here me now? Okay good, I’m going to continue at
this point I’m sorry for that disruption. I had to hang up and dial back into the phone number. Alright now that you’ve made the application, some information about what to expect. If you’ve applied a protective fungicide
it’s only going to work the plant surfaces that were sprayed today. If you have new growth coming on and you know how fast that can happen, especially with zucchini and plants like that, that new growth will be unprotected. If you’re using herbicides it can take time to kill plants. Sometimes up to two weeks. So make sure to read your label and if you’re still not sure you can always can NPIC I’ve spoken to many people on the phones overtime, that will use a weed killer and if those weeds aren’t dead the next day they try spraying again and again. And that’s just unnecessary exposure to the environment and to you. Also some insecticides may be slow to work. You may not see dead bugs right away. Now what to do with leftover solution. Use it up on an approved application site. That’s really the best and only piece and only advice I can give you. If it’s a product that you mixed up to apply to turf or grassy area, and you’ve already treated your grassy
area. Then ask around to see if your friends need the same kind of application, and you can go over spray out the rest of what you’ve got on their grassy area. Never pour pesticides on to soil, gravel, or turf. Never put pesticides in storm drains or street gutters. Usually there’s a good section on the label called disposal, and it will tell you what to do with products and oftentimes its more focused on the product container. It tells you how to dispose of the empty container, but sometimes it will also tell you what to do with deluded product that you have leftover. If you decide to store it and just put that sprayer back in the shed and maybe bring it out in a couple of days or a couple of weeks. The quality of that product may change in unexpected ways. It may get stronger, it may get weaker. So it becomes very imprecise and difficult. If you need to find a household hazardous waste event, we talked about that earlier and there’s a spot on our website where you can look that number up in your state. But this is another alternative, you can call Earth 911. And they try to keep track as well of the events that are going on around the nation. Alright, now you’re ready to put things away. Some good practices in pesticide storage. Don’t store pesticides with food, near a well, or with your PPE. Try to put your liquids down low and your solids up high, so if you have granules and dusts there up above the liquids. And thats of course because the liquids may leak overtime, and then they’re drizzling onto the pesticides below making mixtures that are had to predict. Secondary containment for liquids, this
is a picture that does a great job demonstrating that. The secondary containment is the tubs underneath those jugs. So if one of the jobs actually got a
crack in it or maybe it failed for some reason, the dripping fluid or sometimes the gushing fluid would by caught by that secondary tray. Alright now that we’ve been through a great list of things to do, good strategies and bad. Try to think again back to your beginning planning stage, and think about how you can make the need for pesticide more rare. Instead of growing that problem fruit or vegetable you could always buy them. I made that decision about zucchini this year. I could not keep up with the powdery mildew I was having to spray over and over again. And you know what zucchini is cheap, especially in this part of the country. So I’m just going to go ahead and buy it next year. Revisit those barrier ideas that might
have seemed like too much work at the time, but maybe in the comparison to the alternatives they’re better ideas now. Consider using mulch for weed suppression or a hard stream of water to knock insects off your plants. Traps can be used to suppress pest populations. And again replace any problem plants that are just problematic year after year, with pest or disease-resistant varieties. Your ideal condition when you look at your garden, you don’t want to have zero pest. If you have zero pest, you’ll have zero predators because they have to have some pest to eat. So if you want to have a nice healthy balance and keep things in check. You’re hoping to have a few pest, some predators, and also pollinators and parasitoids that make your garden home. Flowering plants can attract those kind of things and if you have a refuge of plants that are purely ornamental, and you really just don’t need to spray at all, that can be a refuge for a population. So that’s just to plant the seed of an idea of what you’re going for is good for diversity. Aright one more pitch to have you call the National Pesticide Information Center. You can call us to compare the toxicity of products, to evaluate their persistence. If you’re not sure about some of the characteristics we talked about today, I’m not sure if the product in my shed is selective or it might be out-of-date, you can call us about that. If you’re wondering about a product risk to groundwater, fish, or bees, or drinking water, or you just need help with some confusing label statement, we can help you with that. I am very proud of the team that we have
here at NPIC. Folks sometimes think since we’re located at a university that we have students answering the phone, and it’s absolutely not true these are professionals who love science and love people. And that’s a great combination that’s hard to find in today’s world, so do give us a call. Alright now we’re going to finish up the presentation with talking about some ugly examples. Some of the worst stories I’ve heard over time. Do not assume that vegetable spray means all vegetables I’ve actually seen label that say on the front vegetable spray, but if you open up the pamphlet on the back there only allowed for one or two vegetables. And the same is true with fruit tree spray, you have to go further. Don’t assume that the last person who
used the spray rinsed it out really well. Don’t assume that your plants will be hardy enough to take small amounts of herbicide, they can be damaged easily, especially grapes, tomatoes, potatoes, things in the Solanaceae. And also please don’t assume that you don’t need wash up because you didn’t get any on you. I’ve spoken to folks over time who say I didn’t think I got any of that product on me. Didn’t shower that night and the next morning I woke up with the exposed area of my skin, everywhere that wasn’t covered with a t-shirt is red and inflamed. So there might be residue sitting on your skin that you are not aware of. And also please don’t apply the wrong product all together. Every summer we hear from people who accidentally sprayed their prize roses with herbicide, and they’re just beside them about how to counteract the situation. And sometimes they cannot be counteracted. We also hear from people every year that accidentally used at a product meant for ornamentals on their vegetable garden. And sometimes their entire vegetable garden. And then they’re in an awful position of having to decide, do I have to discard all my fruits and vegetables because they have this illegal pesticide on them? Or am I going to take a chance? If I take a chance for me and my family, am I still willing to share these with my neighbors like I normally would? And it’s just heart-wrenching, so please be
careful and avoid that. Also some things to be aware of, treated wood is treated with pesticide that’s what treated means and some other more risky than others. In particular railroad ties should not be used in gardening because creosote or pentachlorophenol, can be carcinogenic and can sometimes in small amounts be taken up by plants. Now if you already have a garden bed like this, there are things you can do. You can put up liners of landscape fabric to keep the roots and railroad ties separate. Alright, next mothballs. They’re gaseous pesticides, and they’re only allowed to be used in airtight containers for that reason. They fill up the container with insecticide gas and when they reach a toxic enough concentration, it kills the clothes moths that might be in that container. We’ve heard from hundreds of gardeners who have tried to use mothballs to deter cats, dogs from scratching around in their garden, snakes, and all kinds of things and the risk is not worth it. For one thing it’s illegal and for another thing it’s available to pets, wildlife, and children. If a child picks up a mothball and puts it in their mouth, it a trip to the emergency room. And it’s just not worth that risk to be having them strewn about around your yard or around your garden. Pool chemicals are often pesticides. We hear from people every year who go to put one of the tablets in the pool and put their face too close to it, and get a big whiff of chlorine gas which burns. It burns in the lungs so make sure your face is away from that when you put them in. With foggers I’m not sure where to start
there so many ways foggers can go wrong. First of all don’t use too many. Hang a sign on your door. The reason to
hang a sign on your door that says insecticide, is that many times this has happened where a neighbor calls and says, I think there’s a fire in my neighbor’s apartment or in my neighbor’s house. The fire department comes and they see what looks like smoke inside, and they charge in getting a big face full of insecticide. Also of course follow the label, turn off your ignition sources so something like this doesn’t happen to you. A woman set of 24 bug bombs at once causing an explosion that partially collapsed a Manhattan building. This one happened in 2003 but as long
as I’ve been doing this work for ten years or more, it seems like we hear one of these stories
just about every year and sometimes more. That’s a serious precautions on the label, it’s not being alarmist. Also some of the ugly things that we’ve
heard about people treating for bed bugs. I think bed bugs in particular, they affect the way people sleep and maybe affect their good judgement. because we’ve heard about people using heavy duty pesticides, applying it to their own skin, sometimes applying it to the skin of their children. And we’re talking about daily. Long-cancelled pesticide being used in homes, for example aldrin an organochlorine that we haven’t used it since the 70’s I believe. Piling on, where they apply pesticide over and over again too high rates. We’ve heard about people using flammable liquids like gasoline to kill bed bugs, and this of course in their bedroom. We’ve heard about folks spraying their sleeping areas until wet with pesticides, and doing that every night before bed. And we’ve heard of at least one human death that was related to pesticide misuse for bed bug control. So this is serious business. Those of you on the call today if you do get calls from people about bed bugs, one of the early things that you should bring up is that the label is the law. And you can make the problem worse and put yourself in more danger if you misuse pesticides. Now my brother is afraid of insects and
he often says kill it with fire. Well here are some great examples of why that’s a horrible idea. As much as you might be afraid of the bugs, or the spiders, or whatever it might be, snakes in the
bottom for example. It’s not worth burning your house
down of course. Lastly the most ugly example. I started with this example and I’m going to finish with it. The ugliest thing you can do is put pesticides in a container that could be confused for food or beverages. In poison center data over 1400 times from 1998 to 2009, they heard about poisoning caused by this practice and at least 12 deaths were related to pesticides in that time. We talked earlier about how tempting it can be if you get a pesticide product and you have more than you can ever use. That you might want to share some with your neighbors. I’m gonna tell you today I’m going to tell you today, take the pesticide product over to your neighbor in its container. In its original container with its label and then go pick it up when they’re done using it. The risk of life and limb from putting
in a container like this is just not worth it. So please don’t do that ever. Alright, now that we talked about the good bad and the ugly. Let’s have some time for questions. Okay, feel free to type in your questions in the chat box. Also I’d like express appreciation to several people who have been helping us with the chat box. Its Danny Carroll, and Danny has been working with me on moderating this. Cathy Flanders and Amanda, I’m not sure if I know how to pronounce Amanda’s last name but it’s Tidro or Tedro. And we appreciate her help. Again, there’s Kaci’s contact information on-screen. We have a short survey that we would like you to complete. There’s one that may be is in the chat box, but there’s also this one that you see here, it’s a URL that you can click on and then go in and answer some questions. We need input to be able to continue these programs. In order to provide information that
is of interest to people and to benefit them. We appreciate you Kaci, you did a tremendous job. You covered a lot of information in a short amount of time. Well good I’m glad and I’m so sorry for
that audio problem. I hope it wasn’t going on too long. Oh no it was fine, we hated to interrupt you. I see quite a few questions in the chat box, I’m going to type in the location of where this webinar will be. The recording of this webinar will appear I will put that in. But there are a number of questions. Okay, I see one question, any possibility that organophosphates will ever come back? In terms of residential uses around the home and garden it’s not very likely. They did risk assessment finding that the risk was too great for residential exposure. And new research has been coming out even more overtime since the cancellation about potentially problematic effects, especially with exposure to children. So that’s not likely to happen. What else? Would a barrier work for squash vine borers, if so when when I put it on to ensure good pollination? That’s a great question and I don’t know the answer to to it. It’s going to be specific to your local area, because things ripen and pollinate at different times of the year. So that’s a great question for a master gardener in your area. What’s another question I can address? There’s one about broad-spectrum insecticides and the effects and benefits. The leaf example to explain that a little bit
further? I guess that’s what they’re talking about. Okay, well with predators I made the argument that predators can actually be impacted greater than pests, when they’re hit with a broad-spectrum insecticide. And the reason is, first of all, there are few of them to begin with because there’s going to be fewer predators than there are pest, based on the ecology. And the few remaining survivors, if there are any, may not have access to enough adequate food source because most of the pest are gone, to sustain their lives. And then they have a slower time coming back in terms of population, because they have to wait long enough for a couple population cycles to go through to get that predator population back up. Does that help? What’s another question we can address? I see an answer in the box for the squash vine borer. Someone is recommending to plant according to your planting dates. You’ll be finished with squash by the time they arrive. Okay, exclusions not a good idea there. Do you see any others that I can address? Well why they are looking for my questions, we have a few questions that we’d like to ask you with our poll system. So if Susan has a chance to post our pull questions for us, we’d appreciate that. We appreciate you all responding to these
questions. Like I said, that helps us to know how to continue doing these webinars and make them beneficent to you. We are running low on time. Appreciate everybody’s patience during the time we had a little bit of audio issues. We appreciate Kaci especially, she did a tremendous job covering the information and sharing with us. Thank you. And I’m honored by 90 some people showing up for the webinar, and I hope those folks can actually pass it around to others and we can prevent some mishaps. Oh yeah, that’s very important.There’s a lot of times that happens. I think we were over a hundred at one time, so we had some great participation. That’s great. Again we appreciate Danny Carol, she’s a regional eXtension agent with Alabama Cooperative Extension System, and Cathy Flanders, an entomologist with Alabama Cooperative Extension System helping us. As well as Amanda. Okay. The best predator, I think I’ve tried to that one earlier, with the re-explanation. But if that that person wants to contact me directly, I’d be happy to talk about it further. That’s a good reminder there from Utah eXtension, if you need help identifying a pest, contact your local eXtension office. Right that’s what we’re here for. That’s great. We’re here to provide resources for information. Somebody was asking about bed bugs. There is a recording we did last year dealing with bed bugs, it’s a pretty difficult pest to handle. We talk to a lot of folks, about 1 in 20 call these days is about bed bugs here at our center. One thing I learned is you need to get a positive identification, because there’s a bat bug, that is an infestation of bats and it looks very similar to the bed bug. And our head center epidemiologist identified it and it turned out to be a bat bug and it doesn’t feed on humans. That’s why it’s important to get a positive identification on an insect pest, before you started administering some type of treatment, so you don’t spend a lot of money and turns out it wasn’t bed bugs. And it can be so much money to hire professionals for bed bugs and it can be pretty expensive, so that’s a great reminder. Hey Kathy you still there? I’m still here Charles. Are we going a little longer? I don’t know if we have a cut-off? I think you decide. Do you see any more questions there, that you think she needs to respond to? Someone asked about printing slides from the presentation, you’re welcome to send me an e-mail. And I’ll just send you the PowerPoint presentations so you can print them off in handout style or any style you’d like. I’m honored that you’d like them. My email address was on a previous slide, so you can pop right back to it when the recording is up Do you know Charles when the recording will be live? It should be up Monday at noon time there’s a little bit of a lag before we can get at URL. But as soon as we can get it, we’ll post it. Okay, great. We again appreciate all the sponsors that sponsored the webinar. The eXtensions Communities of Practice of Imported Fire Ants, Urban IPM, Pesticide Environmental Stewardship, and Alabama Cooperative Extension System. As well as the University of Georgie Center for Urban Agriculture. But I guess we probably just wrap this up then, looks like its slowing down on some of the questions coming in. We appreciate you all joining us, remember to help us out and complete the survey, at the conclusion of the last slide there. Just click on that link and it will carry you to it. Thank you again Kaci for presenting, you did a tremendous job. Appreciate everybody joining us for this program. Thank you, and thank you for everyone in attendance.

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