Spraying Glyphosate Weed Killer and Pine Trees

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by RobD70, Aug 9, 2014.

  1. RobD70

    RobD70 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 29

    I sprayed a homeowners lawn with Durango, a glyphosate weed killer to kill off the entire lawn for a complete renovation. That was about 2 weeds ago. I stopped over today to use the hand sprayer to hit some green areas I missed or needed a little extra shot. It was a little breezy the day the grass was sprayed, not to bad, but where the home is, the wind swirls some. He has a couple rows of pine trees that are on average about 5 feet tall or so and I am sure overspray got on them. When over today, they showed no signs at all of discoloring yet. My question is this, if enough overspray got on them, how long does it take for it to start to show? I know it takes a fair amount to kill a tree of this size, but Im guessing some needles would turn color at least for this year. I have read in some spots that say it wont kill pine trees, and have read in other spots where it can. Im hopinh it dont hurt them.


  2. georgialawn88

    georgialawn88 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,075

    you will be fine. that was 2 weeks ago and no needles are discolored I don't think you have anything to be worried about. but get ready for some prick on here to ask if you are licensed.
  3. ArTurf

    ArTurf LawnSite Platinum Member
    Male, from Ark
    Messages: 4,471

    The point of being licensed aside from the legal and moral aspect is that one has basic knowledge of what they are doing. Someone who does not opens them up to a world of bad scenarios. I've seen it happen, that's all I'll say.
  4. rlitman

    rlitman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,763

    Let's pretend the homeowner gave him the stuff and said to spray it. That gets around the license issue and at least lets us be helpful.

    As for roundup on trees. It takes quite a bit to kill a tree. More so to hurt a conifer, as their waxy leaf coat prevents water/chemical takeup, and the small leaf profile limits the amount of chemical that can even land on it. I would expect new growth (the bright green part) to be most at risk, as it has the least protected surface.

    But use this as a lesson to be more careful and NOT SPRAY IN THE WIND, not as a lesson to see what you can get away with.
  5. FdLLawnMan

    FdLLawnMan LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,253

    No it doesn't. What matters is the action, not who purchased the product. Those are those are the rules in my state.
  6. FoghornLeghorn

    FoghornLeghorn LawnSite Senior Member
    from Texas
    Messages: 753

    You'll be fine. If you had some basal bark contact from a drift, it's okay. That doesn't mean it's a good idea and we encourage it, but it's not the end of the world.

    Glyphosate doesn't penetrate through bark easily, but even if it did, the amount required to kill a tree would be so high that it would have to be an intentional act.

    You really need to worry about 2,4-d, atrazine, or triclopyr drift.

    Some tips, buy a fan nozzle, spray in morning before wind picks up, keep your nozzle height under 18 inches, and use low pressure (under 40psi to keep your droplets from turning to airborne mist)
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  7. RobD70

    RobD70 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 29

    Yeah Im hoping nothing changes as far as needles changing color. I will be there next weekend to start on the renovation, so will see then. Yep after reading some other threads, I am aware of how some are, but thats ok, that stuff goes in one ear and out the other. Thanks.
  8. RobD70

    RobD70 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 29

    It was a light breeze with some minor gusts. I was planning to do it earlier in the morning but the dew was so heavy it looked like it had jsut rained on the grass. As I said, where the house was located, the winds swirl some so while ok most of the time, the swirling light wind makes it a pain to get it perfect. That group of pine trees is the only area I was concerned with as the rest of the yard is pretty much wide open. This had nothing to do with trying to see what I could get away with, but more with havign to pick the best time available to get it done. Overall it looks to have gone good, with some minor concern with those trees.
  9. FoghornLeghorn

    FoghornLeghorn LawnSite Senior Member
    from Texas
    Messages: 753

    All too often, us landscapers get caught up and paralyzed in the "I need to do this perfectly or I can't do it at all" syndrome.

    Just get out there and get it done. I have learned after Being in this business for a long time is that "pretty close" is often very acceptable level of service and accuracy.

    Example: Everyone gets so worked up and concerned with having an exact application rate on their backpack sprayer, or their spray rig. Honestly, what is the difference if you apply 14 gallons per acre or 16.1 gallons per acre. The difference in actual effect is so minuscule, that it just does not matter.

    33 ounces of active ingredient per acre of growth regulator or 31.2 ounces per acre,. Seriously, if you are close enough to be in the ballpark, most of the time it's fine.

    We are not maintaining the Augusta national golf course...There is some room for slight error. The important thing is that you just get out there and get the work done in a good workmanlike fashion for your customers.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  10. WenzelOSLLC

    WenzelOSLLC LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 709

    A bit of a sidebar: They do make spray shields/canopies for this kind of thing. Eliminates drift and allows spraying in the wind.

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