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We recently attended a training program from Bonide. A topic that we covered was defining Natural products from organic products. Natural insecticides can be chemical, mineral, or biological. Natural products can generally be described as chemical compounds or substances produced by living organisms. Organic pesticide products must be produced from materials on the national list of synthetic substances, or come from all-natural substances that are not prohibited and a regulatory oversight structure. Bonide has simplified the identification of these products on their labels.

Pesticides have many categories, Insecticides kill insects, Herbicides kills plants considered to be weeds, Fungicides kill disease producing organisms in plants, Mollusacides kills snails and slugs that damage plants, Rodenticides kills (you guessed it) rodents around homes and gardens. Acaracides kills mites and spiders. What I found interesting is how insecticides work. There are four categories of insecticides; Suffocants that coat the body, larva or egg that restricts the flow of oxygen in all the life stages of the insect. Descants that allow moisture to escape the insect’s body faster than it allows absorbing causing the insect to essentially dry out and die. Biochemical Inhibitor; acts like a nerve gas. Growth inhibitors; disrupts the stages of growth. Repellants; Create uninhabitable areas for insects and pests through taste, smell, or irritation. Insects damage plants by either chewing or sucking so it is important to know what you are dealing with.

Weed control is what most homeowners focus on for a lush green lawn throughout the summer going into fall and winter. It is basically a year round process. I learned that there are ways to attack weeds, treating for pre Emergent weeds before they become a problem and post emergent when they have appeared in your garden or lawn. ( Oh that neighbor that doesn’t take care of the lawn). Something I was not aware of is temperature. Applying has be a certain temperature for them to be affective for instance Crab Grass and weed preventer must be applied at temperature 65 degrees or warmer to work properly and for pre-emergent applications should be applied 4-5 days before you cut your lawn. No wonder I have weeds I’d cut the lawn and then apply the treatment. Also make sure the lawn is damp when applying. When recommending any type of chemical, fertilizer we must be aware of the applicable laws in both New York and Connecticut there may be one that is ok to use in Connecticut but not New York

There was a lot to absorb (no pun intended) in the training. What will be helpful for our team and our customers is the APP that I have downloaded into my phone that can identify any problem our customers may have and come up with the proper solution. Whether it’s what type of grass seed they need, pest problem, weed issues, to what type of fertilizer to use on your lawn or in your garden we will be able to answer their needs and supply the correct product to be successful this summer. I will encourage our team to download the APP and have it available on the fly.

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