pesticides that you refuse to touch

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by fblandscape, May 27, 2003.

  1. dan deutekom

    dan deutekom LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 424

    In reply to SWD's post

    quote "First off all, any synthetic pesticide, be it a fertilizer, herbicide or insecticide, has a risk associated with it." should read First off all, any pesticide, be it synthetic or organic, fertilizer, herbicide or insecticide, has a risk associated with it. A pesticide by definition kills. If it didn't there would be no point in using it.

    quote "Second, regardless if it is a organophosphate or carbamate based insecticide, all are cancerous/lethal and the ones with the most severe side effects are the fungicides, due to repeated/prolonged exposure." should read
    Second, regardless if it is a organophosphate, carbamate or organic based insecticide, most are cancerous and all are lethal and can have severe side effects due to repeated/prolonged exposure.

    The rest is right on. Protect yourself and use the material wisely. Everyday we use things that pose far greater risks without even thinking about it.
  2. xpnd

    xpnd LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 378

    I suppose pendamethlin would be my first choice. Of all the herb/pest I use I use this one the most - 25 gallons of concentrate. It gives me the most prolonged and repeated exposures. Even though I use the the PPE, I can still smell it on me when I go into the shower at the end of the day.
  3. Fvstringpicker

    Fvstringpicker LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,643

    Anything rated "danger" and skull/cross-bones
  4. Tharrell

    Tharrell LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,967

    The only one I have that has a skull and crossbones is Zinc, for rodent control. It's pure Zinc not the stuff that's rtu. I rarely open that can because it has a secondary kill. The times it's used are when nothing else will work, like when rodents have been feeding on dog food (vitamin k1, antidote).
  5. Dchall_San_Antonio

    Dchall_San_Antonio LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 327

    I disagree that they are all hazardous. I'm not a pro, but I use ordinary cooking corn meal to control fungus in my grass and garden. I dip my hand into the bag and sling it out. I breathe it in, too. Corn meal works by bringing in another disease to attack the first one. The corn meal disease attacks only the cell walls of the turf disease and nothing else. Corn meal and the disease are safe for mammals, birds, and fish. Texas A&M University at Stephenville did the research on this.

    Against insects I use disease-causing nematodes. These little guys carry a bacteria that is lethal to insect larvae but not to mammals, birds, or fish. Fire ants, fleas and grubs are the main targets for beneficial nematodes.

    I'm not saying that any of this is practical for y'all, but to say it is all dangerous is somewhat misleading.
  6. GLAN

    GLAN Banned
    Messages: 1,647

    I will use anything that has an EPA registration number.

    I get a colonesterase (sp) test done every year at the end of the season. No problems.....
  7. KenH

    KenH LawnSite Bronze Member
    from CT
    Messages: 1,622

    You should also have this test done in the middle of the season to see where your levels are at. I believe there are damaging threshholds.
  8. lordohturf

    lordohturf LawnSite Member
    from SW OH
    Messages: 173

    Pesticides are as safe as the person using them. Once mixed properly in a dilution they are often less harmfull than taking an
    aspirin or drinking a cup of coffee. This is no excuse for carelessness. Dress properly and take the proper safety precautions while mixing! This is where you are at your greatest exposure! Some of the low volume and boom applications also put you at risk.

    If you practice an IPM approach to services which require pesticides, you use less and reduce your exposure.

    P.S. Even though they are probably no riskier than any other product I always hated spraying Dursban, Orthene and Malathion, mainly because of the smell.
  9. dan deutekom

    dan deutekom LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 424

    Not all insects are harmful and many are beneficial. Your nematodes quite often kill the beneficial larvae as well as the target pest. This is a risk.

    The same is true for different types of fungus.

    Don't be mislead by the fact that just because you can eat it, it won't cause any harm. Check out the LD50 of table salt. Or the research into the good fats and bad fats in your diet. How about alcohol poisoning. These are all natural products that can definitely be harmful. I am not against organics. They just arn't the panacea that they seem to be.

    A very natural product for pest control is nicotine. Old time gardeners use to make their own spray by soaking their butts in water. Later it became a commercial spray. Even later it was banned as a pest control product because it was to dangerous!
    Now the "organic books" suggest soaking tobacco in water to make a "safe" natural spray. It scares me that the naturalists use all sorts of "safe" sprays that have never been thoroughly tested and can be very dangerous. Using salt to kill weeds? I shudder to think what that does to the environment. Hot water steam machines to kill weeds. They use 2 gallons of gasoline, to run the pumps, 5 gallons of kerosene to run the burners and a man working for 4 hours to achieve 50% of the effectiveness of 1 man with a backpack sprayer and 3 ounces of roundup that takes 1/2 hour to spray. I ask which is better for the environment?

    Organics can work very well in the correct circumstances. Unfortunately those circumstances are very rare in the real world.

    I looked very closely at using a Beet extract for weed control last year. (used the same principal as corn gluten. After analyzing the facts as presented it just didn't make any sense. One spray of Killex would cost 60.00 in material and give me an 85% kill rate of weeds. The same results were not achievable with the beet extract. The manufacture claimed a 35% kill rate after 3 treatments. The cost 3600.00 in materials plus 3 times the labour. The interesting part is that they claimed the beet extract was 11 times less toxic than 24d. And it there pure forms. But when applied as directed at the recommended application rates the beet extract was actually much more toxic as applied because you need 40 times the amount of material applied 3 tiimes!

    I am serious about my horticulture and I try new ways of doing things all the time. Mechanical, natural or synthetic. Some things work, some don't. But one thing I have learned is that it is better to be sceptical about everything and try it for yourself in the real world.

    And I have found the organic movement to be highly overrated with very exaggerated claims.

    So far in every side by side comparison that I have made the synthetics have outperformed the organics 90% of the time.

    Also all of the synthetics have been well tested and are approved by the government. Most of the organics have not and the legality of using an unregesterd product must also be considered.

  10. Grassmechanic

    Grassmechanic LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,697

    Dan, you're right on. A balanced approach using all available means is the best way to go. And I always wondered what those farmers were doing with their coveralls down, sitting in buckets. Now I know!:D

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