Like HowStuffWorks on Facebook!

How Using Pesticides in Landscaping Works


Pesticide sign on manicured lawn.
Pesticide sign on manicured lawn.
iStockphoto.com/Kirby Hamilton

­When you look at a pro and con list, you know what to do. You weigh the good versus the bad and then make an educated decision. Sometimes, people forget this helpful techniq­ue and altogether beneficial things can get a bad rap. Pesticide usage may be one of those things.

Most of the available information regarding pesticides is negative, as is the public's perception of pesticide use. In fact, one researcher found that negative viewpoints outnumbered positive ones 40 to one [source: Cooper]. But obviously pesticides play an important part in our society, or they wouldn't have withstood the test of time as they have thus far.

Pesticide usage can be risky, but it comes with numerous benefits. Pesticides not only help non-weed plants grow quickly and free from disease, but they keep termites out of your kitchen and your carpet flea free [source: Delaplace].

­This article will help you better understand pesticides, their uses, their benefits and how to react during pesticide-re­lated emergencies. Let's start with the basics.

Pesticides are categorized in two ways -- they can be either "domestic" or "non-domestic." Domestic pesticides, which don't require any formal training for application, are those you can buy at pretty much any retail store. They usually come in small quantities and have low concentrations of the active chemicals. Non-domestic pesticides on the other hand, are serious business. These are usually bought in bulk and reserved for those with special training and equipment. Their higher concentrations make them unsafe for use by the non-qualified.

So you know pesticide exposure can cause poisoning, but more often than that, it prevents disease. Read on to discover just how important pesticides have become.


More to Explore