Being a good neighbor with pesticide applications means thinking first, about what your pesticide application might do to harm your neighbors crops. This is not only good citizenship, it is also the law. Pesticide labels state that you must make every effort to reduce the risk of drift to non-target species, and there are state laws that require some pesticides not to be used after certain dates to protect the crops of others. Always read the label of any pesticide before you use it and consider what may be downwind from you that may be harmed by that pesticide application. Making good pesticide application decisions will help reduce your risks of off target herbicide damage. Failing to make good application decisions could make you financially liable for any harm that you do. So how can we utilize the agricultural production practices we need to be productive, and at the same time do no harm to our neighbor’s livelihood?
One of the ways would be for us to try and keep informed about what is going on around us, and then making herbicide application decisions based on trying to eliminate any harm to others crops. Just knowing when grannies garden is up, or when the cotton has been planted, or where that vineyard is located will go a long way in helping us make decisions about when to spray and what herbicide we can use. The Oklahoma Department of Agriculture is attempting to help us out by creating a website that landowners can log onto and locate a map where vineyards are located or where cotton may be planted. The map also allows people that have organic production, or specialty crops, to mark their farms on the map. Producers wishing to spray pesticides on their property can then up load the maps and be able to make informed decisions on what, when, and under what weather conditions they should spray. This map also shows producers the areas in the state that have legal restrictions on when and how auxin type herbicides can be used.