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Pesticides and other garden products can harm plants, people, or the environment if not used correctly.

Follow these tips when selecting and using a garden product.
  • Identify the problem. Knowing the problem is the first step towards solving it.
  • Find the product that solves the problem. All products do not work on every pest. Labels tell you what a product is meant to do and how it should be applied.
  • Buy the right amount for your needs. The product label tells you how much to use to treat a problem. Buy only what you need. Some products might not work as well if stored for long periods of time. A larger size might not be a good value if you can't use it.
  • Use the product the right way. Product labels tell you how to safely use products for best results. Use only the amount indicated on the label. More is not better and can even harm plants and lawns. If the label tells you to mix a product in another container, use all of the mixture. If you can't use all of the mixture, label the new container for use in the future.
  • Pay attention to warnings. Follow the directions about wearing gloves or protective clothing. Understand when and how to apply the product and when it is safe for people or pets to re-enter treated areas. Note how long to wait before picking fruits and vegetables.
  • Prevent harm to the environment. Outdoor lawn and garden products that run into ponds, creeks or other water supplies can contaminate drinking water and kill fish and birds. Apply products according to label directions to prevent harm to the environment. Never pour lawn and garden products down a drain. If you can't use the entire product, pass it on to someone who can.

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
Consumer Labeling Initiative

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