Imprelis Discussion - it's damage, Dupont's Claim Process, Lawsuits filed, Experience

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by Starbuy, Feb 27, 2012.


    AIRCORP LawnSite Member
    Posts: 16

    Hi Everyone.

    Yesterday was another day in the field for me. I want to discuss a few points here.

    1. Wally, you want to estimate 3 years of additional growth. I have the growth rate for every major tree involved. I use these data in my damage model analysis models. It is very reliable from the USDA and can withstand the scrutiny of the court. Let me know what trees you have and I can send you those growth numbers. But, it is three years, not two.

    2. Leaves are fully expanded on most trees here in Missouri and expected 2012 growth is almost complete. I evaluated red maples yesterday. Hope you are all sitting down and your pace makers are tuned up.

    From my preliminary work I found a control tree not sprayed with Imprelis, same variety, same soil type, planted about the same time but not sprayed with Imprelis. Then I compared this to trees growing on imprelis lawns.

    The Imprelis maples showed no apparent injury if you stood back from a distance. But up close you could see obvious chemical injury. Then, I looked at the annual limb growth.

    Each year a limb will grow in response to environmental stimulii, and also be influenced by human factors such as irrigation, fertilizer and chemical applications. Thus, if Imprelis did slow tree growth you could look at the annual limb growth and compare with other trees or with previous year's growth.

    There are clear "scars" on the small limbs that show each year where growth stopped. These scars usually look like a cluster of thin rings around the limb. If you take a ruler you can measure each distance between scars and determine annual growth. Try it.

    Now, the control Red Maple w/o Imprelis measured about 13 inches long for this years growth. Here are the Imprelis tree measurements for this year. 1.12; 0.5; 0.25 for one tree and 2.0 and 2.25 for the other. About an 80% reduction in growth or more. Then, you can look at 2011 growth, last year, what did Imprelis do last year: 1.87; 1.87; 2.12; on one tree and 2.6; 2.25 on the other.

    Here is my first attempt at posting a photograph. The treated tree limbs are two years of growth. The center limb, not treated, is just from this year's growth.

    Red Maple Limb growth.jpg

    AIRCORP LawnSite Member
    Posts: 16

    Ok, back again.

    So, you can see from the photograph I just sent, you all may have some serious issues to deal with. How many of you have hardwood trees that appear weak? And spruce that show little or no growth this spring?

    Why can't an apparently healthy spruce tree put out new buds this year? Look at it, the terminal buds appear brown, dead, maybe some new axillary buds trying to pop out behind the terminal.

    Ask yourself why?

    Because ALL trees and plants on your property have been impacted by Imprelis. Every single plant on your property. You may not see the injury at first, the tree looks ok from a distance, but now, you can begin to look close.

    In my opinon:

    1. The toxin is still in the soil and causing injury in many areas of the country.

    2. Property owners may lose 5 years of normal growth or more before the trees recover, if they recover, you know, they can go the other way and decline over the five years and you have firewood standing in your front yard and your Dec 31, 2013 guarantee DuPont gives you is long forgotten.

    3. Trees decline slowly folks. Some faster than others. I saw this in the last DuPont investigation I worked on from 1993 to 2001 with their product Benlate.

    4. Trees that don't put on new growth, why..... they don't have the energy reserves to do so. They are growing weaker. Their root systems are damaged and they can't take up water and nutrients. Leaves are light green to yellow in some cases. That means there is no chlorophyll in the leaves folks. You have to have "green" chlorophyll for photosynthesis to manufacture sugars for the tree to live on.

    5. Don't let DuPont bully you into a quick settlement like they are doing with Wally. You should be compensated for all of your "lost growth" at a reasonable rate of say $150 to $200 per foot of lost growth depending on the tree size etc.

    6. A red maple will grow 1.8 feet per year in the wild according to the USDA. How fast will it grow in your well fertilized and irrigated lawn? But, let's just use the wild growth number 1.8 x 5 = 9 feet. 80% loss is about 7 feet x $150 = $1050 per tree. Do you think this is a stretch of the imagination? This is based on my preliminary work, but, let's assume I'm wrong and it is only 1/2 of what I claim, that is still $500 bucks.

    7. Imagine your trees 5 years from now and what they would look like? AFter all, why did you plant trees? Wasn't it with the expectation that they would grow and develop into something you wanted in your back yard? DuPont has taken those expectations away from you and you don't even realize it. So many people do not see what is happening here.

    8. Then, how did DuPont measure your tree last fall or whenever they came out? They took a measurement based on the "current" condition of the tree. Ask yourself, I couldn't replant last year, I can't replant this year, maybe, just maybe it will be safe to replant next year. OK

    9. So, the replant next year won't grow very much. And, you run the risk of a continued impact of Imprelis on the tree, maybe not, maybe so, even DuPont doesn't know.

    10, Therefore, if DuPont didn't poison your tree in 2011, how large would it be at the end of 2013? Shouldn't DuPont pay you for what the tree would have looked like in the fall of 2013? They stole three years of growth, or most likely more like 4 years depending on the size of your replant.

    11. In the case of red maple, a 20 foot tree in 2011 would be compensated at $1910, this is DuPont's value, not mine. 3 yrs x 1.8 feet = 5.4 feet. DuPont's value for a 25.4 ft tree is::::: == $3500. That is about a $1500 difference. You just lost another $1500.

    12. To those who still think it is best for them to negotiate on their own without the assistance of legal expertise, how far do you think you are going to get with DuPont on your own? Look at Wally, all he wanted to do was have his trees cut down by someone else is how I understand it. Think people, think.

    13. I'm not an attorney, I am a plant scientist, I offer no legal advice or suggestions of any kind. None. I just do my job as a plant scientist and report what I see. My findings are just preliminary. Additional research may prove me wrong and that is ok. That is what the scientific method is all about, discovering false and misleading science that can result in erronous expectations. Do not rely on my work since it has not been tested by other reliable scientists and DuPont. They should have a chance to evaluate these opinions of mine and offer their own opinions. I strongly recommended that you contact DuPont and request they conduct their own studies to insure that "good" science and economics will prevail in the analysis and financial evaluation of this toxic event.

    That's it.

    Have a great day.
  3. Starbuy

    Starbuy LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 335

    AIRCORP, your input here is priceless. I'm sure every property owner would agree. Thank you for taking the time to educate us!!!
  4. cindyb

    cindyb LawnSite Senior Member
    from KY
    Posts: 354

    Amen. I guess I should thank Dupont for giving me plenty of time to study and consider the present and future damage. I sure don't want my property labeled as a hazardous soil site and me take the blame.

    Star, this article from Perdue says the same thing you are saying, its not just our trees (bushes, fruits, vegetables, flowers and anything else in the way)

    The pdf hasn't been updated since 06 but I'd say their figures and values are still the same

    My tree company (the one that Dupont has on the list) measured my trees in base inches. I have my estimate from the tree company on 2 inch trees so I have a good idea

    Location, condition, tree base, cross section, class tables are all there with value of species.
  5. Starbuy

    Starbuy LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 335

    Cindy, that link is excellent as well as your keen observations on the real value differences being noted between how much more appraisal value there is in a tree on a residential property compared to that same tree on a golf course, due to various reasons described in that link. Dupont's attempt to treat everything as one-value-fits-all price per foot simply doesn't add up according to true appraisal studies on real estate.

    Just more papers to add to my potential courtroom arsenal of information. I'm the type of person that just because I have an attorney for something and their appraisers doesn't mean I don't look after everything and have input throughout. Just like I never let someone manage my money blindly, but keep tabs on everything and make moves accordingly when markets turn or when I know they are about to. I helped some protect and even make money during 2007/2008 when the markets headed down because I told them to ignore their money managers who said everything was rosey in 2007 (some listened, some didn't). I knew in the summer of 2007 we were headed for a deep recession because I study, study, study. It pays to stay on top of what we own and protect what we've worked so hard for and same goes for our landscape value. Just my views.
    Last edited: May 31, 2012
  6. cindyb

    cindyb LawnSite Senior Member
    from KY
    Posts: 354

    Well we've had plenty of time to study.

    I was watching the ducks climb out of my pool last night (don't ask) and head to the shade tree. Huge drop in temperature when the trees block the sun. Guess that's why people plant shade trees by their houses. Truefully that needs to be factored in. We've already hit record temps here, 90's and its not even summer. My trees go, my shade goes and my AC runs longer. How long till I can grow a tree that size?

    Another thing that I thought about is, when we had the pool built, our driveway is a special aggregate concrete, the trucks carted the heavy stuff in from the road. Not possible with the tree company's equipment. What is it going to do to my driveway and the lateral lines that run across my yard?
    Last edited: May 31, 2012
  7. Starbuy

    Starbuy LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 335

    Cindy, you're the first person I've heard from that has brought up the increased energy costs the Imprelis damage may cause homeowners due to lack of shade from the damaged trees that must be removed and possibly years until the new ones grow to the full sizes some people enjoyed. ANOTHER cost to add in to any settlement or court case. Hope law firms are taking notes.

    It will be very illuminating to find out years from now how many plants, shrubs and trees that will be forever removed from this nation due to Imprelis and the side effects caused from the loss of that plant life; truly a man-made environmental catastrophe.
  8. cindyb

    cindyb LawnSite Senior Member
    from KY
    Posts: 354

    I'm sure a lot of people are taking notes, can't just be us here with all the views. I remember not having air conditioning growing up, just a ceiling fan and sitting under the shade trees.
  9. cindyb

    cindyb LawnSite Senior Member
    from KY
    Posts: 354

    From Forestry

    1. Trees Produce Oxygen
    Let's face it, we could not exist as we do if there were no trees. A mature leafy tree produces as much oxygen in a season as 10 people inhale in a year. What many people don't realize is the forest also acts as a giant filter that cleans the air we breath.

    2. Trees Clean the Soil
    The term phytoremediation is a fancy word for the absorption of dangerous chemicals and other pollutants that have entered the soil. Trees can either store harmful pollutants or actually change the pollutant into less harmful forms. Trees filter sewage and farm chemicals, reduce the effects of animal wastes, clean roadside spills and clean water runoff into streams.

    3. Trees Control Noise Pollution

    Trees muffle urban noise almost as effectively as stone walls. Trees, planted at strategic points in a neighborhood or around your house, can abate major noises from freeways and airports.

    4. Trees Slow Storm Water Runoff
    Flash flooding can be dramatically reduced by a forest or by planting trees. One Colorado blue spruce, either planted or growing wild, can intercept more than 1000 gallons of water annually when fully grown. Underground water-holding aquifers are recharged with this slowing down of water runoff.

    5. Trees Are Carbon Sinks

    To produce its food, a tree absorbs and locks away carbon dioxide in the wood, roots and leaves. Carbon dioxide is a global warming suspect. A forest is a carbon storage area or a "sink" that can lock up as much carbon as it produces. This locking-up process "stores" carbon as wood and not as an available "greenhouse" gas.

    6. Trees Clean the Air
    Trees help cleanse the air by intercepting airborne particles, reducing heat, and absorbing such pollutants as carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, and nitrogen dioxide. Trees remove this air pollution by lowering air temperature, through respiration, and by retaining particulates.

    7. Trees Shade and Cool
    Shade resulting in cooling is what a tree is best known for. Shade from trees reduces the need for air conditioning in summer. In winter, trees break the force of winter winds, lowering heating costs. Studies have shown that parts of cities without cooling shade from trees can literally be "heat islands" with temperatures as much as 12 degrees Fahrenheit higher than surrounding areas.

    8. Trees Act as Windbreaks
    During windy and cold seasons, trees located on the windward side act as windbreaks. A windbreak can lower home heating bills up to 30% and have a significant effect on reducing snow drifts. A reduction in wind can also reduce the drying effect on soil and vegetation behind the windbreak and help keep precious topsoil in place.

    9. Trees Fight Soil Erosion
    Erosion control has always started with tree and grass planting projects. Tree roots bind the soil and their leaves break the force of wind and rain on soil. Trees fight soil erosion, conserve rainwater and reduce water runoff and sediment deposit after storms.

    10. Trees Increase Property Values

    Real estate values increase when trees beautify a property or neighborhood. Trees can increase the property value of your home by 15% or more.
  10. cindyb

    cindyb LawnSite Senior Member
    from KY
    Posts: 354

    This one is in my binder

    One more that's local Forum Summary web 12-17-09.pdf

    Last edited: May 31, 2012

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