Read Entire Label before Using Pesticide, Especially in Hot Weather

Reading the entire pesticide label, including the fine print, is critical to minimize danger to yourself, pets and plants.

Chicago Tribune
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A hot weekend afternoon may seem like the perfect time to spray those pesky weeds in the lawn. Stop! Spraying certain insecticides and herbicides in hot weather can increase the risk that they will damage your plants, according to Julie Janoski, manager of the Plant Clinic at the Morton Arboretum in Lisle, Illinois.

When the temperature is high, some chemicals are more likely to damage plant tissue. Many garden chemicals also evaporate faster when it’s hot, so they may drift through the air and settle on plants you did not intend to spray. That can damage leaves and flowers, or kill beneficial insects.

Here’s the wrinkle: Not all pesticides have the same rules because they don’t contain the same chemical substances. So how do you know what do to? “Read the label,” Janoski said. “It will give you exact directions for applying that particular product, including the required weather conditions.”

Reading the label doesn’t just mean reading the big letters on the front of the bottle. It means opening the booklet of product information that is pasted to the back and reading the fine print.

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