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View Full Version : Should lawn chemicals be discontinued for homeowner use?


Hoots
02-17-2009, 09:08 PM
It seems as if there are many people that wish to stop the "pollution" of land with chemicals. I say that most products, used within reason, are not bad. The problem we are facing these days is the over use and misuse of products. Anything in too much volume is bad, yes even water.

There are many people that are misusing lawn products without really paying attention. Many people on this site have seen these situations on a daily basis. Homeowners using Round-Up on Crabgrass, or pouring undiluted products into a spray can and spraying the weeds. Most of the time people just don't read the label.

The other issue to selling control products "over the counter" is the "Lawn Guy" who is looking to make an extra buck. This is one of the biggest offenders and the biggest problems. These guys think that just because it is sold at the local hardware store anybody can buy it and spray it anywhere. Yes anyone can buy them but it is meant for your own use. It is similar to "over the counter" drugs. Just because you can buy Tylenol does not mean you can go to someones house, give them the medication, and call yourself a doctor.

There have been many lawn chemicals that have been removed from the market place for various reasons, some of them being over use. Some products have been removed, like Sudafed, because people were misusing them. You now have to ask permission from behind the counter, similar to most (if not all) states requiring a license to purchase more than one quart of 2,4-D. We lost MSMA here recently. Why can we not use it as a restricted use-licensed applicator only product.

I know that this sounds pretty controlling, and almost a bad governmental idea. I feel that we need to educate everyone on the uses of these products before they are misused and removed from the market. Everyone has to have a drivers license to get behind the wheel of a motor vehicle, why can't we do the same for lawn care products?

In the words of Bill O'Reilly, What say you?

dwc
02-17-2009, 09:51 PM
Absolutely. Fertilizer should be included. I can't tell you how many times I hear the weather guy on tv say "better get that fert put down, got a big storm brewing!" Most every ceu meeting I attend, the state guys always mention it's the home owners that are misusing/abusing label laws and misapplying fertilizer. I just talked to a new customer the other day who told me he used 5 bags of fertilizer on his 6,000 foot lawn at one time. This is ridiculous and needs to be stopped immediately before it affects us all.
It's one of those things like when you were in school and the one kid did something stupid and the whole class got punished for it. We are all going to get punished for what some home owners are doing. Most guys I know doing this for a living take care of the environment that provides our income. I have customers tell me all the time "be sure to put in on extra heavy". I tell them I will apply it correctly and legally and thats as "heavy" as its getting.

Just to show the lack of people reading the label, I get at least a few people a week tell me they sprayed their dandelions with that m stuff, m-t-a or whatever it is. I ask them you mean msma? Oh yeah thats it! I just say uh huh, don't look like that worked for you.

I wish they would change these laws before its too late. I hate to see government control of things, but when its misused and abused, and hurts the environment it needs to be stopped!

Ric
02-17-2009, 10:03 PM
Yo Dreamers

It is not going to happen so give up the Idea.

When they ban all chemical application by CPO, homeowners will still be pouring it on their yards.

PS Sure we would all love to see this happen, Goes with out saying.

treegal1
02-17-2009, 10:04 PM
yes!!!!!!!

Hoots
02-17-2009, 10:09 PM
Treegal, YES what?

The idea is not to remove all chemicals. The idea is to stop the misuse of them by uninformed people.

Ric, I know it is virtually impossible to make this happen, but we did hire a president that has some questionable socialistic ideals.

treegal1
02-17-2009, 10:18 PM
Should lawn chemicals be discontinued for homeowner use? YES

most if not all should be professional use only, IMO

Ric
02-17-2009, 10:22 PM
Treegal, YES what?

The idea is not to remove all chemicals. The idea is to stop the misuse of them by uninformed people.

Ric, I know it is virtually impossible to make this happen, but we did hire a president that has some questionable socialistic ideals.

Hoots

Yes TreeGal is a Tree Hugger.

IMHO There is no question about socialistic ideals.

Real Green
02-17-2009, 10:30 PM
Yo Dreamers

It is not going to happen so give up the Idea.

When they ban all chemical application by CPO, homeowners will still be pouring it on their yards.

PS Sure we would all love to see this happen, Goes with out saying.

Amen!

Ric, sometimes when topics come up, I don't bother responding because I know I can't say it better than you would, so I wait. You always come through when I expect it most. Thank you!

Hoots
02-17-2009, 10:32 PM
Treegal, thanks. That is my point exactly. Professional use only. Some may say that it would be cornering the market. There will still be competition to keep prices in check.

I feel that we might still have MSMA if it were pro use only. I hear that golf courses and sod farms can still use it but only once per year. Someone correct me if I am mistaken.

DWC, I agree.
Even regular fertilizers are overused.

We would not be where we are today without the use of synthetic products. I hope they don't try to take them away from everyone.

Ric
02-17-2009, 11:05 PM
:walking:Amen!

Ric, sometimes when topics come up, I don't bother responding because I know I can't say it better than you would, so I wait. You always come through when I expect it most. Thank you!

Real Green

One thing I am is candidate. I speak my mind regardless of who's toes I step on. I believe everyone knows where they stand with me. Same with my customers and friends. You can go to the bank with my honesty.

greendoctor
02-18-2009, 12:39 AM
I say no. However, anyone who wants to do their own applications should need to become certified as a private applicator similar to what farmers and ranchers have to do. Then I would not mind seeing homeowners at Lesco or UAP, knowing the DOA has their information on file That way, the DOA has the right to monitor use, storage and application. I can also be assured that a homeowner either understands proper calibration of spray equipment and fertilizer spreaders. No more of this throw a couple of ounces of something into a sprayer and go burn holes in the lawn. As is, a homeowner could be storing and using heaven knows what, but I the certified applicator must comply with everything on the label. I do not like to see bottles or bags of pesticides unsecurced in people's garages or the same being handled without PPE. Any of those two situations equals a big fine for me. To me broadleaf herbicide is broadleaf herbicide and bifenthrin is bifenthrin. I do not care that one is sold OTC. Correction, I do care that one formulation is sold with almost no oversight by the DOA.

whoopassonthebluegrass
02-18-2009, 12:44 AM
Ric: what is it you're a candidate for?

Here's the perfect solution to the problem: raise prices on chemicals 10 fold. Then, if you have a commercial applicator's license, you get a 90% discount.

Instant relevance and job security.

Ric
02-18-2009, 12:56 AM
Ric: what is it you're a candidate for?

Here's the perfect solution to the problem: raise prices on chemicals 10 fold. Then, if you have a commercial applicator's license, you get a 90% discount.

Instant relevance and job security.

Whooped

I guess a Spelling Lesson. Candid.

Rayholio
02-18-2009, 12:57 AM
IF they ban the use of pesticides by home owners, WE are next...

"ITS A TRAP!!"

Whitey4
02-18-2009, 01:27 AM
It will never happen, at least directly. The way has already been marked.

Counties, local governments and states will just continue to restrict ALL controls, including ferts in a peice mael fashion. From narrower windows to legally apply,like on Long Island (Oct 30 to April 1, no fert apps), prohibiting one pesticie group at a time, like MSMA, to outright fert bans, it is already happening.

This would never fly, but I'd like to see some sort of free,on line mandatory one hour course requirement for any lawn and ornamental applications for any and all users who can purchase controls and fert.

Scotts, Bayer and the rest will always have enough money to head things off in Washington, but they can't fight the local governments one at a time. The problem for us is that these local laws are often targeted at us and the home owners. They fail to address the fact that we aren't the problem... it's at least in my area, the farms, golf courses and home owners.

mngrassguy
02-18-2009, 02:00 AM
The state of Minnesota has been looking into licensing homeowners for awhile now. I doubt it will happen in my lifetime. The Dept of Ag wants more money for enforcement first. They want a voluntary program to start with, then go from there.

Grandview
02-18-2009, 05:36 AM
IF they ban the use of pesticides by home owners, WE are next...

"ITS A TRAP!!"

I agree with this. The people who want to ban pesticides totally will start with the home owner. Once that is done they go after the certified applicator.

gregory
02-18-2009, 10:22 AM
I say no. However, anyone who wants to do their own applications should need to become certified as a private applicator similar to what farmers and ranchers have to do. Then I would not mind seeing homeowners at Lesco or UAP, knowing the DOA has their information on file That way, the DOA has the right to monitor use, storage and application. I can also be assured that a homeowner either understands proper calibration of spray equipment and fertilizer spreaders. No more of this throw a couple of ounces of something into a sprayer and go burn holes in the lawn. As is, a homeowner could be storing and using heaven knows what, but I the certified applicator must comply with everything on the label. I do not like to see bottles or bags of pesticides unsecurced in people's garages or the same being handled without PPE. Any of those two situations equals a big fine for me. To me broadleaf herbicide is broadleaf herbicide and bifenthrin is bifenthrin. I do not care that one is sold OTC. Correction, I do care that one formulation is sold with almost no oversight by the DOA.



i am just joe homewoner and i agree with what you say here green but that would cost some money for them to do and enforce. but it wouldn't hurt my feelings if i had to go take a test hell i would do it now if i din't have to work for somebody in order to take it.. most home owners don't know and read the label after the product has been put down.. but i have came on here and got alot of help from ric aond roy and green by just reading andmost home owners will not do this...

Ric
02-18-2009, 11:10 AM
i am just joe homewoner and i agree with what you say here green but that would cost some money for them to do and enforce. but it wouldn't hurt my feelings if i had to go take a test hell i would do it now if i din't have to work for somebody in order to take it.. most home owners don't know and read the label after the product has been put down.. but i have came on here and got alot of help from ric aond roy and green by just reading andmost home owners will not do this...

Karl

While I know of other Homeowner who are as knowledgeable as you, You gays are the exception to the rule. I am sure you could pass the Fla. CPO test if you wanted too. But just reading here, those who claim to be professional show how ignorant they are of chemicals. Many States sell Pesticide license to anyone who can half way read and pay the fee.

treegal1
02-18-2009, 11:17 AM
my opinion not expressed, here is something that i have been watching.............

http://www.cbc.ca/health/story/2009/02/18/nb-pesticide-poll.html

gregory
02-18-2009, 11:27 AM
Karl

While I know of other Homeowner who are as knowledgeable as you, You gays are the exception to the rule. I am sure you could pass the Fla. CPO test if you wanted too. But just reading here, those who claim to be professional show how ignorant they are of chemicals. Many States sell Pesticide license to anyone who can half way read and pay the fee.

very true ric i see and read the same thing and ask myself those same very questions.. you could do the same thing with a cdl go to a town further south and east of us and pay the fee and you have a class A CDL and not know the first thing about driving a truck with a gvw of 80k pounds

whoopassonthebluegrass
02-18-2009, 11:54 AM
While I know of other Homeowner who are as knowledgeable as you, You gays are the exception to the rule.

What is it about the homosexual persuasion that makes them superior?

gregory
02-18-2009, 12:19 PM
What is it about the homosexual persuasion that makes them superior?

a bit of a typo...

whoopassonthebluegrass
02-18-2009, 12:24 PM
a bit of a typo...

I know. :smile: I'm just ensuring that Ric is able to take what he dishes out. lol.

I mean, for such an old geezer, these kind of mistakes are totally understandable... but still.

treegal1
02-18-2009, 12:27 PM
What is it about the homosexual persuasion that makes them superior?2 disposable incomes and no kids.... just ask my brother, oh and really nice clothes!!!!!

br549oicu8
02-18-2009, 12:42 PM
I agree that it would be nice to have to be licensed to purchase lawn chemicals but.....let's look at other trades as well. This is just for discussion, not necessarily my opinion.
Should all plumbing supplies be available to licensed plumbers only? Lots of things can happen with a water heater and vent, gas, etc..in unknowing hands.
Should the same be for electrical?? I know some of you have seen nightmares with that one. I know I have.
What about woodburning stoves?? Lots of people die from fires started by improper installations.
Furnaces???

See...you could go on and on.

I don't see it ever happening, no matter how frustrated we all may get.

My 2 cents....and please give me change back!!

LOL!!

larryinalabama
02-18-2009, 12:42 PM
Keep the fertilizer and ban the gays

gregory
02-18-2009, 01:35 PM
I agree that it would be nice to have to be licensed to purchase lawn chemicals but.....let's look at other trades as well. This is just for discussion, not necessarily my opinion.
Should all plumbing supplies be available to licensed plumbers only? Lots of things can happen with a water heater and vent, gas, etc..in unknowing hands.
Should the same be for electrical?? I know some of you have seen nightmares with that one. I know I have.
What about woodburning stoves?? Lots of people die from fires started by improper installations.
Furnaces???



I don't see it ever happening, no matter how frustrated we all may get.



My 2 cents....and please give me change back!!

LOL!!

i agree with you...you get a guy who brought his CDL and wants to replace the brakes on his truck that he has no idea how to drive and he has never put brakes on anything but now he's going to replace the brakes on a trk with a gvw of 80k pounds remeber that the next time you are in front of a dump truck or tractor trailer.. it happens all the time guys will do something they have no idea and then take it apart and then call me and ask for help happens all the time with transmissions and diffs on there trucks what 89.00 per hour i will do it myself tell them good luck........

Rayholio
02-18-2009, 02:32 PM
Homeowner use is allready regulated.

As far as having ANYTHING banned or disallowed by the government... How are you going to pay for it?? The government should stay out of peoples lives as much as possible.. That includes CDL big rig breaks, AND home owner use pesticides.

The idea that we need the government to protect us is not only insulting, it's creating FEAR of these things... Which as you all know, FEAR is one thing our industry doesn't need more of.

Hoots
02-18-2009, 02:46 PM
Homeowner use is allready regulated.

As far as having ANYTHING banned or disallowed by the government... How are you going to pay for it?? The government should stay out of peoples lives as much as possible.. That includes CDL big rig breaks, AND home owner use pesticides.

The idea that we need the government to protect us is not only insulting, it's creating FEAR of these things... Which as you all know, FEAR is one thing our industry doesn't need more of.

How is homeowner use regulated? Ok they can get slightly lower AI products that they pour directly in a sprayer and over apply.

For your second issue on big rig breaks, you don't want to know if the big rig next to you carrying thousands of gallons of fuel is capable of stopping safely when he needs to? COME ON MAN!!!

The best way to pay for enforcement IMO is the fines. If the states would park an agent at a different busy intersection everyday, I guarantee you he could pay for his salary for the year in 2 weeks or less. There are so many crews applying products without a license all over.

I agree we do not need TOO much government. But the fact of the matter is if we do not do something to stop the misuse of products by the uninformed, we will lose all of the products for all people.

I bring the point up again, Sudafed. People were misusing it, it was pulled behind the counter to be dispensed to people who should be able to handle it (over 18) and it is still available. This is the same as home owners getting a private applicators license for their own use. They get educated.

grassman177
02-18-2009, 02:48 PM
i dont want to even argue the many points here, but in my experience theyont even understand yet read the labels. they should not even be offered to them, , it will never happen, but one can dream a bit

Rayholio
02-18-2009, 03:17 PM
Home owner use is regulated thru the EPA registration system. and also thru product pricing.. My customers have yet to find an effective way to control nutsedge.. they simply can't find the right product to do it.. and some products are restricted use...

HOMEOWNERS ARE SUBJECT TO THE SAME LAWS AS US.. in that they must follow the label... Why don't we enforce current laws before we start throwing around new ones??

I don't know much about semi breaks.. and I personally would probably not be trying to change them... however individuals have the right to try to do it themselves, and by outlawing it, your only going to increase government presence, and expence.. The SAME people will STILL be changing their own breaks despite the law. This has been prooven with the banning of certain types of freon etc.. they just create a black market.

Fines can not support the law.. if this were the case, our police stations, fire departments... EPA, IRS ect would be TOTALLY self sufficiant... More laws = More Government = Bigger deficit.. . (that's a period.)

Sudifed.. Pisses me off.. I got sick last year, and had no idea it had been moved behind the counter.. Tried half a dozen different meds, which did NOTHING.. finally someone told me that was behind the counter.. They checked my license.. and I went.. But again.. Whats the point?? If people would control their children, this wouldn't be a problem would it?

YOU NEED TO FOCUS ON THE PROBLEM... NOT THE SYMPTOM.. especially in the case with sudifed..

How is homeowner use regulated? Ok they can get slightly lower AI products that they pour directly in a sprayer and over apply.

For your second issue on big rig breaks, you don't want to know if the big rig next to you carrying thousands of gallons of fuel is capable of stopping safely when he needs to? COME ON MAN!!!

The best way to pay for enforcement IMO is the fines. If the states would park an agent at a different busy intersection everyday, I guarantee you he could pay for his salary for the year in 2 weeks or less. There are so many crews applying products without a license all over.

I agree we do not need TOO much government. But the fact of the matter is if we do not do something to stop the misuse of products by the uninformed, we will lose all of the products for all people.

I bring the point up again, Sudafed. People were misusing it, it was pulled behind the counter to be dispensed to people who should be able to handle it (over 18) and it is still available. This is the same as home owners getting a private applicators license for their own use. They get educated.

bug-guy
02-18-2009, 05:11 PM
walk down the isle at the big box stores and look at the manufactures. scotts and vigro and others will never let them take chem/fert from homeowners. and what fines or threats can the government put on a homeowner. they have no lic. to suspend and the few inspectors there are will never be able to patrol the homeowner. the homeowner is truly unregulated.
just putting not for sale to home owners somewhere on the package does not make it law, heck with internet buying they can get anything.
i have seen homeowners with ausulox recently purchased and the lawn label has been removed for over 10 yrs

bug-guy
02-18-2009, 05:20 PM
b-4 anyone jumps on my case... yes i sell to homeowners too.
i have to it's part of my job. but they do pay at least 2x more than my pro customers,
which i hope shows value to the job they do. and most of the time when i see they are way in over their head i tell them to hire a pro.... and you guessed it they just went through 2 companies. i always tell them to arrange to meet w/prospective companies and don't just get an estimate but interview them for the job. get a picture of expectations and they will not be as disappointed. unfortunately they think they will get better service with a big company and always tell them try to get a small company and keep the $ in their hometown

mngrassguy
02-18-2009, 05:22 PM
Last summer. I saw a Mom and dad help a 6 year old spray their lawn. All with shorts and bare feet. Someone needs to protect these people from themselves.

bug-guy
02-18-2009, 05:28 PM
heck when i first starting in the industry a homeowner skipped a service as he was spraying his lawn at the time w chorlidane... with his shorts and flipflops on. probably died early and no body connected the cause.

Rayholio
02-18-2009, 05:44 PM
Every example above violates an allready existing law.. You can't enforce it.. so lets write some new ones.. doesn't make a lot of sense.

If you guys want to start talking about enforcing label laws.. and increasing the penalty.. I'm all for it. But you'll never STOP homeowners from applying to their own lawn, just by writing a new law that says it's so.

tlg
02-18-2009, 10:21 PM
My experience has lead me to believe that the average homeowner has no clue as to what they are trying to control, the timing of the product being applied, the rate, and on and on. I have seen homeowners using Imidicloprid to kill active grubs, spray weed killer in shorts and tennis shoes. The list could go on forever. Based on these experiences I would say homeowner use should be restricted. If anything to protect themselves, their neighbors and our environment. When you consider the potential hazards it does make sense. Do I think it will ever happen? Never say never as they say. Who knows what our government will legislate against. It all boils down to who has the most money and how well you can lobby our elected officials. I don't know the stats, but I would bet that over the counter pesticides and fertilizers probably out sell professional use. That's a large market that retail sure won't want to give up. It's to bad you can't legislate intelligence.

Rayholio
02-18-2009, 10:34 PM
again.. Direct violations of allready existing laws..

Not to mention that I've seen pro applicators making the same mistakes.... Further regulation didn't seem to stop them.. why would it stop the homeowner?

tlg
02-18-2009, 11:18 PM
I don't disagree with what your saying. We all know that ever label out there say it's a violation of federal law to use the product inconsistent with it's labeling. Homeowner or professional it dosen't matter. There is no way that any of it is enforceable to any great degree. Big brother can't be everywhere. If I understand the original thread the ban on homeowner use could only be enforced by forbidding retail sales of pesticides and fertilizers. I don't think enforcing this ban on Lowe's or Home Depot would be real hard and I doubt they would willfully try and sell a baned product. My point is this. If Joe Q. Citizen can't buy the stuff, enforcement against him is irrelevant. I will be happy to take the additional work when ole Joe can't do his own lawn anymore.

Rayholio
02-18-2009, 11:29 PM
then perhaps the penaltys should be drasticly increased, to add a fear factor to the situation.. and maybe even make it worthwhile for city police to hire their own inspectors..

another huge problem with Banning on the home owner front.. home owners will ask 'why' and they will be told that pesticides, and fertilizers are too 'dangerous' for them.. A massive, ignorant movement will be born, and WE will lose our rights to these chemicals in no time.

tlg
02-18-2009, 11:48 PM
I really doubt if it ever happened penalties would be severe. Our government likes to slap hands. I wonder how that crap in Canada is going? You may be right on Ray. Look what happened to them!

Marcos
02-19-2009, 12:10 AM
Rayholio and Grandview are 100% correct.

If/when pesticides are banned for homeowners as a core group, the door's wide open (and easier) to go after the green industry as another core group.
The heaviest lobbying segments (golf & sports fields) will probably get exemptions, because obviously, that's where the most $$$$$$ lies, when you look at it per-square-foot wise.

Homeowners?!? :):rolleyes:
What really needs to happen with residential-labelled & marketed pesticides...is that a "virtual version" of the late Fred Rogers be incorporated onto a CD with every bottle, bag or shaker sold, instructing each specific homeowner instructions like this:

"Got that new bottle of Or-tho ? yesss, I KNOW you do! Now, go get your rub-ber gloves, those nif-ty clear gog-gles, and those cool rub-ber booties out of the closet!
You KNOW you're supposed to be wearing them, don't you?...... Of COURSE you do!...........

etc....etc....etc.... :laugh::laugh::laugh:

JDUtah
02-19-2009, 12:40 AM
Homeowner bags marked with surgeon generals warning...

---------------------------------------------------------------------
SURGEON GENERAL'S WARNING: My grandpa, uncle, and mother
died of painful cancer because this product was not applied correctly.
Do yourself and your family a favor and hire a professional.
---------------------------------------------------------------------

greendoctor
02-19-2009, 04:12 AM
My experience has lead me to believe that the average homeowner has no clue as to what they are trying to control, the timing of the product being applied, the rate, and on and on. I have seen homeowners using Imidicloprid to kill active grubs, spray weed killer in shorts and tennis shoes. The list could go on forever. Based on these experiences I would say homeowner use should be restricted. If anything to protect themselves, their neighbors and our environment. When you consider the potential hazards it does make sense. Do I think it will ever happen? Never say never as they say. Who knows what our government will legislate against. It all boils down to who has the most money and how well you can lobby our elected officials. I don't know the stats, but I would bet that over the counter pesticides and fertilizers probably out sell professional use. That's a large market that retail sure won't want to give up. It's to bad you can't legislate intelligence.

I would not be upset if licensing fees were collected and used strictly for funding testing and enforcement. It is only $50 for a certification in Hawaii and that is good for 5 years, after which either reexamination or accumulation of enough CEUs is required. Failure rate is also around 50%. The exam centers on the federal pesticide law, calibration and following labels. For all of the stubborn DIYers here:hammerhead:, I could imagine enough being collected to make this idea viable if the fee for anyone applying for a certification is more along the lines of $250. I would pay it, so I can be assured everyone is following the same rules I must follow. I also know homeowners who would gladly pay it just so they can do it themselves and not call in a specialist. There are some that insist on doing it themselves even though a product label might as well be written in Farsi to them and they will do unsafe things or apply in a way that is not effective. Certifying all users is a way to go after these people.

I do not like arbitrary bans on products. Many issues stem from how they are used. It is not right that I get quizzed about aprons, face shields, waterproof footwear, and calibration of equipment because I am a certified applicator handling 2,4-D labeled for commercial use. Yet Mr. DIYer just poured a bartender's shot of Weed-B-Gon into a hand can, the wind is gusting, and by all appearances he is dressed to go surfing, not handle pesticides. The DOA inspects me first, even though what the homeowner is doing violated the label 6 ways to Sunday. As much as I dislike laws and government in general, nothing bugs me more than selective enforcement of the law.