Herbicides, Insecticides, Fungicides, and Safety

Thread starter #1
I was asked by Canuck5 to make a post on pesticides and safety and it took me making a trip to Texas to have time to write it.

The first thing to remember is the label is the law, applying a chemical in a manner that violates the labeling is a FELONY. You can look up the label for nearly any chemical past or present here: http://www.cdms.net/Label-Database.

Calibration for sprayers is also important so you are not wasting money, spraying 2 or 3 or more quarts to the acre of roundup won't kill weeds any faster. Here is a section on sprayer calibrations and gives a shortcut method: http://extension.uga.edu/publications/detail.cfm?number=C683.

As far as herbicide safety goes, most herbicides don't pose acute risks to humans, still follow the PPE requirements on the label., the biggest issue stems from the fact that they are acids. So make sure to clean out sprayers or you'll have corrosion issues.

Make sure if you put herbicides in a different container that they you label them. Gramoxone (Paraquat) will kill humans if it is ingested, it tends to be put in Gatorade bottles, don't do this. To many times some one has drank from those bottles. Skin contact isn't an issue but the acid does serious damage if its ingested.

Also, on the subject of paraquat, if you spray it, do yourself a favor and buy a formulation like Gramoxone that has safeners, you do not want it getting in your lungs.

Something that is not talked about much to homeowners is resistance management. Most people have no clue what a miracle glyphosate (Roundup) is. I urge you to spray multiple modes of action. Spray roundup mixed with paraquat, diquat, 24-d, or dicamba. You get enhanced burndown, quicker herbicidal action, and protect the MOA of glyphosate. This is a list of MOA's https://ag.purdue.edu/btny/weedscience/Documents/Herbicide_MOA_CornSoy_12_2012%5B1%5D.pdf. If you are going to plant with a no till drill, it makes more sense anyway to add a preemergent such as Valor to the glyphosate at burndown any way.
Last edited:
Thread starter #2
Insecticide safety is something for both humans and beneficial insects. This publication lists proper steps to be undertaken to protect pollinating insects from insecticide applications: http://www.ent.uga.edu/Bees/documents/PollinatorBookletforweb2.pdf.

Regardless, as with herbicides, follow the label. Also, broaden your horizons, there are far more products available other than Sevin. This link contains both the commercial and homeowner pest management guides for 2015 until the 2016 is published, http://www.ent.uga.edu/pest-management/.

I also prefer to mix MOA with insecticides as well. I honestly never spray just one thing with the exception of soil applications of imidacloprid at planting. Here is the IRAC classifications of MOA: http://www.irac-online.org/documents/moa-classification/.

As far as Sevin dust goes, it works, its cheap, but there are better chemistries available. It's main disadvantage is that it is not selective and will knock back beneficials as well.
Last edited:
Thread starter #3
Fungicides are a different beast all together, you must rotate modes of actions (MOA) with them or you will end up with resistance issues. They also have to be sprayed as a preventative tool on a schedule, very few of them actually have any curative action. The available chemistries should be listed in the pest management handbook linked above. Your best bet on disease issues is to plant resistant varieties and rotate the crop plantings so its not the same thing planted in the same spot every year. With tree's this isnt possible so you need to develop a schedule and stick to it or pray for a dry year.
Last edited:
Thread starter #4
Last but not least, do not fall for the marketing of organic products. Organic is not safer than conventional production methods, regardless of what the internet may tell you. The only difference is the approved list of chemicals for each one and the amount of safety testing involved. Organic pesticides actually have nearly near zero safety testing whereas a conventional chemical is tested so much that a new chemistry costs $500 million to develop. So make sure to wear PPE when applying them as well as make sure to follow best management practices to protect the beneficials (quite a few organic insecticides are deadly to bees for example).

My final point would be to get your private applicator license. All it takes is going and talking to your county extension agent and taking the test. This would help you learn the do's and don'ts as well as give you broader access. You will need to go to a couple ag related meetings to get the credit hours to keep it current (I think it is 6 credit hours over 3 or 5 years, usually the meetings are worth 2 hours).

If anyone wants them, I'll put the production guides for common food plot crops as well in this thread to get the specific recommendations for each crop.

NEW additions 2/6/16
Forgot soil testing, here is the circular, honestly the soil test is the most important thing you should do when planting. http://extension.uga.edu/publications/detail.cfm?number=C896.
If you are in southwest Ga you may want to send the tests to Waters Lab instead of the UGA lab. They tend to be quicker and a little cheaper, but since they tend to make recommendations higher than uga soil tests since they tend to work with commercial growers.

This is the complete UGA gardening guide if anyone wants to look through it: http://extension.uga.edu/publications/detail.cfm?number=B577.

Here is the planting calendar: http://www.captainplanetfoundation.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/Vegetable-Planting-Schedule-for-Georgia.pdf.

The prep calendar: http://extension.uga.edu/publications/detail.cfm?number=C943.

Planting recommendations for food plots: http://extension.uga.edu/publications/detail.cfm?number=C814.

Rain barrel drip irrigation: http://extension.uga.edu/publications/detail.cfm?number=B1372.
Last edited:


Senior Member
Excellent posts on subjects that need to be fully understood. I'm a big fan of CDMS.net. Thanks for the other links as well.

<<<<should be a sticky>>>>


Senior Member
Excellent doomtrp!!!!! Thanks for taking the time to do this and add to it as more things come to mind. Mr. Elfiii, I think this needs to become a Sticky too!!!!!!!!!


Gone but not forgotten
Thanks for this excellent, helpful information.
A brief video concerning sprayer cleanout; since this sticky is on the subject of spraying. It is very important to properly clean your equipment, lest you inadvertently apply a chemical toxic to your current crop, or go to use your sprayer & all the screens are full of goop...



Senior Member
good video there Forest, I think another important thing regarding sprayer clean out is the site selection you choose to do it at. Are you near a well? Does the site have bad runoff potential? Are their sensitive animals nearby? etc...things to think about when rinsing tanks.