New York State has taken some bold moves when it comes to promoting organic lawn care and reducing the amount of pesticides used on lawn and landscapes. On May 18th Governor Paterson signed the Safe School Grounds bill that ban’s the use of chemical pesticides on the grounds of schools and daycare centers. To me this is a no brainer. Why would we use pesticides where large groups of kids are playing and coming in contact with the grass. However, it is a significant accomplishment considering the lobbying power of the chemical companies and in many ways the lawn and landscape industry that still largely supports the use of pesticides.
Just recently, the DEC launched Be Green-Organic Yards NY. The program is designed to help both lawn/landscape businesses and homeowners use organic landscape practices. First, landscape businesses that are interested in learning and marketing organic land practices to their clients can find training through the DEC.
As per the DEC website “Be Green businesses sign an agreement with DEC for the right to use the
Be Green service mark (logo). In return, businesses agree that, when
they provide Be Green services, they will avoid the synthetic
pesticides and other materials prohibited by the organic conditions in the
agreement. The businesses also take a Be Green training course, before
signing the agreement.”
Although there isn’t any listings yet, homeowners will be able to search for businesses who have completed the course and signed the agreement on the Be Green website.This is very significant because every week I get asked who can I call for organic lawn services.
Unfortunately, providers are far and few between. The program will hopefully help turn the tide on the supply and demand for organic lawn and landscape services.
Have you been looking for an organic lawn care service? Any luck?
Several townships in New York, Massachusetts, Maine and Connecticut have banned the use of pesticides on public property. What do you think? Should your municipality ban the use of pesticides on public property?
Visit www.beyondpesticides.org to educate yourself on the hazards of pesticides used outside and inside our buildings and homes.