Nature abounds with plant and animal species that are detrimental to the health of our landscapes. While it’s impossible to completely eliminate unwanted nuisances from your yard, the right pesticide offers an effective way to reduce the population of these species. Many people think only of insects when discussing pesticides, but in reality, the term “pest” refers to any undesirable organism present in an area–weeds, fungi, rodents, and larva are all pests in addition to insects.
The pesticide market is large, and the variety can be overwhelming. So which pesticide is right for you and your yard? It would be wonderful if there was an all-in-one pesticide that could eliminate all insects or weeds, but unfortunately this is not the case. The pesticide you need will depend on the specific conditions of your lawn, your plants, the time of year, and the particular pest you want to treat. By understanding your unique situation, you can make an educated decision on which pesticide will best suit your purpose.
First, understand that it’s unlikely you’ll be able to completely eliminate the pest–after all, while you can control what you do in your yard, you cannot control what your neighbors do. Insects and weeds do not follow our arbitrary boundaries and do what they want. Because there are so many factors out of your control, understand that there will likely always be some pests in your landscape. Decide how much pest activity you’re willing to tolerate before using pesticide to reduce their population.
Next, be sure you have correctly identified the problem species before searching for pesticides. Often you can find a pesticide that specifically targets your pest while reducing the risk of harming beneficial insects in the process. The more accurately you can identify the pest, the more likely you are to find a product that kills it most effectively. For herb species, it may help to know what kind of plant they are in addition to their species–for example, are they a broadleaf, or more of a woody plant? Are they annuals or perennials? If it is an insect you are battling, do your best to identify it. Research the stages of its life cycle and figure out what stage it is currently in. For example, is it mating season for the insect? Or is a large majority of the population in the larval stage? Understanding the life cycle often comes in handy when selecting a pesticide, because some only target the insect while it is in a certain stage of life.
Read each label. The label contains all the information you need to know about the product, including how and when to apply it, how to calculate the amount you’ll need, and which pest species it controls. You need to make sure the pesticide is labelled for use in the area you need it–some are labelled for gardens, while others are made for lawns. Many pesticides are unable to be used near a body of water because the chemicals in them could harm aquatic life, unless they are specifically labelled for aquatic use. It’s a good idea to re-read the label every time you use it so that the information is fresh in your mind.
If you need more information on the best herbicides, pesticides or lawn treatments, stop by Big Earth Landscape Supply today. We can provide you with the knowledge and the products you need to make sure your lawn and property stay beautiful year-round.