Prepare for Pesticide Spray Season - Part I

| 3/13/2013 11:23:00 AM

The Pesticide Spray Business (everything connected with monoculture farms is a “business”) is pretty quiet in the winter. That’s when we can draw a deep breath, (hopefully free of chemicals), curl up and plan our summer's perfect garden, re-read past issues of Mother Earth News, and peruse books on raising livestock or back yard chickens.

Come spring, though — watch out. The farmers fill up their tanks and away they go — no matter if the wind is gusting over 20 mph…right toward your pesticide driftproperty. Not all farmers throw caution to the wind, so to speak, but even one applicator who disregards the pesticide spraying label is one too many.

If you have had pesticide drift on your property in the past, or suspect you have had, then now is the time to prepare yourself for the new 2013 Pesticide Spray Season.

First things first, of course. What is a pesticide? “Pesticide” is the catch-all word that includes herbicides, insecticides and fungicides.

What is Pesticide Drift? “Pesticide drift” is the movement of a pesticide through the air away from the intended target. You might actually see the drift in the form of a mist. You may smell it. But it can be invisible and odorless. The spray may be applied from the back of a tractor — referred to as a “rig.” Or it may be applied from a spray plane or helicopter.

There is also the possibility — especially if you work away from your property — that you may not see the actual pesticide spray applied to a nearby field. You may notice it only after the fact, by observing your plants or trees wilted, curled or discolored.

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