If you farm or ranch, or own a nursery or greenhouse, have employees, and apply pesticides, this information applies to you. The new rule goes into effect on January 1, 2017.
The original version of the Worker Protection Standard (WPS) rule was passed into law in 1992 and was designed to protect ag workers who may work with or come into contact with pesticides.
In July, 2015 glyphosate-resistant kochia (Kochia scoparia) was identified in a field in Washakie County. It is highly likely that additional glyphosate-resistant populations will soon be confirmed in the region. Glyphosate is the active ingredient in Roundup® and many other herbicides. Resistance develops when herbicides with the same mode of action (MOA) are used repeatedly.
Decisive and coordinated action on the part of farmers, homeowners, municipalities, counties, rights-of-way managers, and weed and pest districts is necessary to prevent further spread.
If glyphosate-resistance in suspected, prevent seed and pollen spread by any means necessary. Zero-tolerance for suspected resistant kochia populations is the goal.
UW Extension and Washakie County Weed and Pest developed two fact sheets on the topic that include herbicide recommendations.
You can download the bulletins here:
More information about herbicide resistance and management:
International Survey of Herbicide Resistant Weeds
Herbicide Resistant Weeds and Their Management - Pacific Northwest Extension Bulletin
Facts about Glyphosate Resistance - Purdue Extension Bulletin
Herbicide Resistant Weeds - University of Minnesota Extension website
Understanding Herbicide Mode of Action - Oklahoma State University Extension Bulletin
Control Freaks blog - a project of University of Wyoming faculty Andrew Kniss and Brian Mealor
If you suspect herbicide resistance please contact your UW Extension Educator as soon as possible. They can help you verify resistance and determine the best course of action.
As gardeners, it seems there are always bugs or weeds we would prefer not to have taking up residence on our roses, or among our lettuce plants. Here are some resources you may find helpful in managing garden weeds and pests.
The first step is diagnosis or identification. There are many books and websites that are helpful, but if you get stumped I can help. Bring in a sample to the office, or send me a few high quality photos, and I can work with our diagnostic team to determine what you are up against!
Once you have identified the weed or pest that you want to get rid of, you can decide how to proceed. If you decide to purchase and use a pesticide product there are a few very important things to keep in mind. Remember, pesticides are toxic, that is why they work.
Here are some additional resources you may find to be helpful.
UW Extension Bulletins and Articles:
Most herbicides break down quickly (within days or weeks) when exposed to sun, heat, and soil microbes. The compost process, with its fluctuating temperatures and thriving microbial activity, also does a great job of degrading most herbicides, pesticides, and other chemicals. However, there is one class of herbicides that may persist up to several years in soil, livestock manure, mulch, and compost. Therefore it is important for gardeners to be aware of how to prevent accidental damage to sensitive plants. These include peas and beans, carrots, tomatoes, peppers, spinach, and strawberries.
Herbicides that contain the active ingredients of aminopyralid, clopyralid, picloram, or aminocyclopyrachlor have the potential to accumulate in manure, compost, or soil. There are many products available on the market that contain one or more of these active ingredients so be sure to read the product label thoroughly!
These herbicides act as growth regulators and are very effective at killing many broad-leaf plants. For this reason they are commonly used on lawns, pastures, and hay fields. What makes these herbicides especially unique is their persistence in livestock manure. When an animal consumes the hay or grass from an area where these herbicides have been used, the active ingredients (clopyralid, etc.) do not break down in the gut and are excreted with the manure. In addition, they also persist in the soil, stockpiled manure, or compost.
When used on lawns, accidental damage can occur if the grass clippings are used as mulch or for composting. Straw bales can also be problematic if from a field sprayed with one of these herbicides.
Growth regulator herbicide damage on beans, sunflowers, and tomatoes
Regardless of active ingredients, carefully read and follow all labels! For more information on safe and effective pesticide use, see my blog post on the topic.
How can you reduce the risk of residual herbicides in the garden?
Herbicides in Compost - Washington State University Extension
Herbicide Carryover - Montana State University Extension
Aminopyralid Stewardship - Dow AgroSciences
Persistent Herbicide FAQ - US Composting Council