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  1. #1
    Super Star Member
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    Apr 2001
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    NH TC25D

    Default Pesticides & Herbicides

    The farmer that has corn in a field we just bought told me that he sprayed with Bicep, which is a combination of Dual and Atrazine. Will this cause problems when I turn the field into pasture next year?


  2. #2
    Super Member
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    JD 8320 MFWD, JD 6415 MFWD, FEL, and cab, John Deere MFWD 4600, John Deere 4020, John Deere 4430, John Deere 455 mower, Deutz, and Gehl 4610 perkins skidsteer

    Default Re: Pesticides & Herbicides

    MIke,
    No it shouldn't cause any problems. Residual is only a few months.


  3. #3

    Default Re: Pesticides & Herbicides

    Gday Mike

    The chemicals you mentioned have the potential to persist in the soil for quite a long time. Dual is probably the chemical "metolachlor". You can find out more about it and "Atrazine" by doing a search on the web under those names.

    These chemicals will break down over time, but this can vary from 2 months to a couple of years depending on conditions. Both of these chemicals are mobile in water and will likely have been flushed out to a large extent, but they can also bind to clay type soils for a long time.

    The breakdown of these chemicals is dependant on microbial action, so the best thing you can do is turn the soil over a few times. This will aerate the soil and help the microbes to digest the chemical. The deeper you can furrow, the better, as atrazine and metalochlor is particularly persistant in undisturbed sub-surface soils.

    As these chemicals are mobile in water, there is a risk to aquatic plant life if you release large amounts of it by turning the soil. So if you want to avoid putting your local creek at risk, you are probably better to wait for the warmer months before you disturb the ground. Atrazine and Metalochlor both break down quickly in warm moist conditions.

    Its also worth finding out how long ago and how often your patch has been sprayed with chemicals. Quiz your farmer friend and find out if there is a history of chemical use on your land. While the most recent dose may have worn off, you dont know what is lurking beneath the soil.

    There is no need to be paranoid about the effects, neither of these chemicals is particularly toxic to humans, but it doesnt hurt to be informed and to take action accordingly.

    Good luck

    Mike Clarke
    Centre for Green Chemistry
    Monash Uni, Melbourne Australia.




  4. #4
    Super Star Member
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    Default Re: Pesticides & Herbicides

    Mike,

    Thanks so much for all the info! It is much appreciated.

    The farmer has planted corn or soy beans in this field for approximately the past 5 years. Before that, it was a field that the owner mowed 2 - 3 times per summer.

    Another farmer I buy hay from has offered to plow, disc and plant grass in. I plan on taking soil samples to determine what nutrients it needs.



  5. #5
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2000
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    382
    Location
    Indiana
    Tractor
    Kubota L175

    Default Re: Pesticides & Herbicides

    Hi Mike Clark,

    Thanks for all the good info from Down Under -- but quite applicable here.

    Before I bought my last rural property, I took water samples to a commercial lab for a thorough analysis. It cost me around $350, but I got a screen against hundreds of potentially harmful chemicals, fertilizers and contaminants. Fortunately there were no traces of anything in my water. But in this day and age, I think anyone contemplating buying in a rural area with large plots of land under cultivation, should consider water analysis.

    BobT.
    A Indiana Boy

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Jul 2001
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    Houston, TX.
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    2001 TN65, 1951 8N Ford

    Default Re: Pesticides & Herbicides

    Do they charge for a water analysis when you send a sample to a university? In California people used to send their samples to UC-Davis. I've heard that here in Texas that you can get an analysis from Texas A and M but I've never had the occation to do it.


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