With beautiful yards and gardens, there often come pests. The easy thing to do is reach for bug spray, but commonly used pesticides can be harmful to people, pets, and the environment. Plus, they often kill the beneficial insects who help keep those pests away. Here are some tips on how to manage pests in an eco-friendly way through wise choices and proper usage:
- Only use pesticides when it is absolutely necessary.
- When selecting a pesticide, choose the least-toxic product available and one that is specific to the pest and plant affected. Traps, enclosed baits, horticultural oils, and insecticidal soaps are examples of less-toxic alternatives.
- Do not apply pesticides if rain is forecast or when you are watering. Run-off can contaminate local waterways.
- Less is better – only use the recommended amount.
- Avoid sprays and spot-treat whenever possible.
- Store pesticides in their original containers, following instructions on the label. Store away from children and pets.
- Dispose of any unused pesticides to the Household Hazardous Waste Collection Facility at 4797 Imhoff Place in Martinez.
- If you are hiring a pest control service, check to see if they provide integrated pest management services.