Commercial Organic Lawn Care Program

Discussion in 'Organic Lawn Care' started by Hamons, Sep 15, 2003.

  1. GroundKprs

    GroundKprs LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,969

    The above post about the effects of 2,4-D is a good example of radical anti-herbicide mentality. Go and read the whole page he gives a link to. That page gives much info about 2,4-D. But the writer above picks out the only negative sentence in the report.

    Further down in the page above: "The absorption of 2,4-D is almost complete in mammals after ingestion and nearly all of the dose is excreted in the urine. The compound is readily absorbed through the skin and lungs. Men given 5 mg/kg excreted about 82% of the dose as unchanged 2,4-D. The half-life is between 10 and 20 hours in living organisms."

    As far as the quote above, how many are going to purposely or accidently ingest 2,4-D for 32 days straight???? And is 32 days a true indicator of CHRONIC exposure?
  2. Green in Idaho

    Green in Idaho LawnSite Senior Member
    from Idaho
    Messages: 833

    It's too early in the morning for me to be laughing this hard.... please help me out here.

    ""Radical anti-herbicide mentality""" ???

    You will notice I earlier wrote spot application of selectives is a good practical solution for an LCO. ALthough spot applications of vinegar are also a good practical solution for those wanting more of the organic method. The WSU doc supports the 20% not being required to be listed as pesticide which certainly opens questions about the licensing requirement per individual state requirements. It furthers illustrates the lack of appropriate warning labels on th e20% solution.

    Your statement of "But the writer above picks out the only negative sentence in the report." REALLY shows a lot about your position.

    Do you think that was the ONLY negative statement???

    32 days straight??? Ask a chem sprayer how many days they are exposed to 2,4-D in a season. A 20 year career???? The issue not not likelyness it is "continued exposure".

    I am sure smoking 5 packs a day for 32 days straight and then stopping is not likely either. But it is still proven that smoking causes lung cancer over extended exposure.

    And hey, perhaps Grassmechanic (resident chemist) can confirm your statement that ""2,4-D is a plant hormone"" ?????
  3. woodycrest

    woodycrest LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 435

    ""Radical anti-herbicide mentality""" ???

    Got me crackin up too...thats a bit extreme isnt it??
  4. woodycrest

    woodycrest LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 435

    let me turn that around....

    RAdical anti-organic mentality....
  5. Dchall_San_Antonio

    Dchall_San_Antonio LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 327

    Okay, folks. If none of the next three posts to this thread contributes directly to the originator's question about implementing commercial lawn care with selected use of synthetic herbicides, I'm going to pull rank and end the discussion on this thread.

    I don't have a problem with the discussion, although on this forum it doesn't really contribute to the overall theme. All I'm saying is if you want to discuss this topic, please open an new thread so everyone who wants to follow it can find it easier.
  6. dan deutekom

    dan deutekom LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 424

    My understanding is that 24d acts hormonally also. But I am not a chemist. Reading the fact sheet also shows how safe 24d is. It is not fair or informative to pick out one negative line from a full study and quote it saying that is the reason we shouldn't use it. This fact sheet also states "The half-life in soil is less than 7 days [21]. Soil microbes are primarily responsible for its disappearance " Kind of blows holes in the theory that using 24d destroys the microbes in the soil when in fact the soil microbes degrade the 24d.

    The WSU vinegar fact sheet states "7% vinegar solutions showed results similar to the ARS study at 5%, namely lack of reliable weed control" It also stated that all EPA registered acetic acid solutions over 11% can cause skin burns on contact and permanent corneal damage. They also have a 48 hour re-entry period requirement. Here is a link to the MSDS for Burnout. Dosn't give nearly as much information as the 24d link. This lack of good scientific info is what makes me skeptical.

    One thing about these discussions it gets me researching stuff:D
  7. Hamons

    Hamons LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 706

    This discussion really is the keystone of this debate for me.

    Does professional and responsible use of pesticides compleytely destroy the benefits of using natural organic materials in the lawn?

    This is different than discussing wheterh we should not use herbicides because they cause cancer ot because they hurt my skin or any of the other perfectly good reasons they are bad -- but what are there effects specifically on the microorganisms in the soil?
  8. dan deutekom

    dan deutekom LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 424


    This is also a major point for me. There just dosn't seem to be any direct documented evidence to support or disprove whether these chemicals destroy the benefits of organic methods. I personally don't believe so and if you are a true proponent of Integrated Pest management/Plant health care then you would use both organic and synthetic methods. We have all used manure and synthetic fertilizer in the same garden. Both have benefits for the soil and plants.

  9. SWD

    SWD LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 988

    As I have stated in earlier postings, I believe there is a place for organic use and for synthetics. The particular dynamics of your maintenance situation typically dictates how much or either you will use.
    I have read quite a bit about soil research and repopulation of sterilized soils. I haven't come across any empirical studies showing detrimental effects of synthetics upon microbial populations. If anyone finds research articles of this type, I would be interested in reading them.
  10. Dchall_San_Antonio

    Dchall_San_Antonio LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 327

    I've been warned already to watch for the use of the word pesticides vice herbicides and insecticides. I'm going to comment on both.

    As far as the spot use of inorganic herbicides on select weeds in turf, mulch, or bare soil, I'm going to relax my organic standards. There are some weeds that do not respond to any organic treatment including mechanical pulling. Nutsedge comes to mind. Although you might kill some grass and soil microbes with overspray, the soil microbes by and large can recover very quickly with a dose of compost and organic fertilizer. If you are using a broadleaf herbicide within 100 feet of a tree, I'm going to beg off on that relaxation. If you are using a product with picloram or clopyralid on turf even without trees I will not relax. This is out of a matter of principle - those two products persist for years after compost digesting and can make compost with those ingredients poisonous to any broadleafed plants they get used on.

    I don't think this question was directed at insects, but I don't want to be misunderstood before I say anything about the topic. As far as using insecticides on any damaging insect, I won't relax my organic standards. There are way too many beneficial insects that we cannot see that will be harmed by the spray. These beneficial insects give 100% control when they are left alone. The problem with killing "a few" beneficials is that the bad guys have a faster reproductive cycle and can return before the beneficials eggs hatch. For example, newborn aphids can be born 100% female and 100% pregnant ready to lay fertile eggs of which 100% will be female and pregnant and they can do that every 7-10 days. Ladybugs and the tiny wasps that destroy aphids take much longer to go through a life cycle if they get killed by overspray. Sometimes the organic solution might be birds, wasps, ladybugs, beneficial nematodes, or several other beneficial insect predators.

    But once again, this forum is not about me. This forum is about your clients and what they want. If they state that they want organic program, make sure you know what they mean. Do they want an organic program all the way up until they see the first weed or grasshopper? Or are they willing to live with that weed or grasshopper while the organic program works against it. In the short, medium, and long terms, I think you'll find fewer bad insects on organic progam properties.

    Does this help or confuse?

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