To Use Pesticides or Not?
The problem with pesticides in lawn care and gardens is that it is made to kill, repel or control certain kinds of plants, animals, and insects which people consider pests. It is also applied to get rid of weeds and mildew. However, there are environmental and health risks which are involved when garden and lawn pesticides are used. You need to always take into account how to properly use them safely. Besides, there are both pros and cons when pesticides are being used, and you should know about both sides.
First the pros
Pesticides do have a use in society because they are used to destroy pests which can bring harm. Because pesticides help controls insects, weeds and other pests, it helps with crop growing and the economy. Because of the mistrust of the type of chemicals which had been used for pest control in lawn care and gardens, manufacturers have come out with biologically-based pesticides. These use pheromones and microbes as a base instead of harmful chemicals. The popularity of these types is safer than using traditional pesticides, and the Environmental Protection Agency has been registering reduced-risk conventional pesticides.
Pesticides can help to keep destructive pests away from developing fruits and vegetables. Mice and insects can contaminate a whole plant which has bloomed which makes the plant useless for eating. When using pesticides, more plants survive, and there's a more abundant harvest.
Pesticides also get rid of weeds when used in lawn care and gardens. When weeds grow in an area which is being used for food consumption, they make use of space in the soil which is supposed to be for crops. Plus, the weeds drink the water and will overtake and choke out other plants.
Mosquitoes which carry yellow fever, malaria and the West Nile virus can be killed by pesticides. When used for this purpose, the pesticides are a prevention of these diseases. Reducing allergic reactions to wasps, ants, and bees are one way not to have these insects around when pesticides are used.
Plus, since fleas are parasites and can make your dog or cat miserable, they can be shielded from this discomfort. Removing fleas from their origin and then making sure the infestation doesn’t start up again is one way that chemicals can decrease this.
Pesticides are easy to get, and you don’t need to be a professional to use them. Whatever you need them for, whether it be lawn care or getting rid of fleas, they’re easily accessible. They can be bought at hardware stores and even grocery stores. Because of manufacturers competing for business, pesticides are more affordable as well.
Lower food prices are the result of using pesticides because of losses being cut. If the harvest is small, then the prices of food will rise so the farmers recoup some of their losses. When using pesticides, then the harvest yield is higher, and the cost of food will be lower. The losses have been reduced so the farmers can offer their products at a lower cost.
Then the cons
With using pesticides in both lawn care and gardens, there are cons which you need to consider. There are significant concerns that the mixture of chemicals used isn't safe for human ingestion. Plus, when used on lawns, if children are present, it can be dangerous to them. With children, they have vital organs which are still developing, so they breathe at a faster rate than adults do. This causes them to breathe in more pesticides, plus, they are closer to the ground.
When pesticides are used, it can cause a decline in the pollinators. Bees and butterflies are affected by the use of the chemicals, and the rate of abundance is changed. Then the fruit and vegetable supply become lessened, and pollination isn't as effective. With agricultural production relying on pollination by insects, around 5-8 percent, some butterflies are becoming an extinct species.
Chemicals from the pesticides can also harm animals as well as the environment. Since a pesticide is made to kill living things, it makes it harmful to those species which is intended to be used. There are a lot of animals which have been killed by eating the plants which have been sprayed with chemicals. Grass and flowers are affected when pesticides are used. Pesticides which have the chemicals fipronil and neonicotinoids are a threat to the environment. Plants ingest this type of pesticides through the vascular systems and then go through the other the plant's tissues, roots, leaves, flowers, and nectar.
Pesticides used around the home for lawn care and gardens aren't really recommended for around residential homes. You may think that since the chemicals are readily acquired that they are safe, but it isn't true. Using pesticides can kill beneficial insects as well as affect your children's health. Plus, a pest can build up a resistance to chemicals over time. You will have to use more and more of these products to get the same result, making the whole process even more dangerous.
Chemicals from pesticides can also affect the environment because 98 percent of insecticides which are sprayed, and 95 percent of herbicides go somewhere other than where they were targeted. So, air, water, soil and non-targeted species of insects and animals can be affected by contamination. This is called a pesticide drift that will carry to other areas and cause contamination. Water pollution is often caused by this pesticide drift.
It can be ingested accidentally by humans which is hazardous to your health. This is especially true within the third world countries. Some farmers may be careless and not use the proper protection when using chemicals, such as gloves or face coverings. If they eat and don't wash their hands, the substances can be ingested which can cause respiratory problems.
As you can see, the debate of using pesticides has two sides. It comes down to a personal choice of what you feel is safe to use or not to use in your lawn care schedule or in your garden.