Tag Archives: safe handling of toxic chemicals

Is this really necessary?

"Honey, I'm going out to spray the weeds in the garden."

“Honey, I’m going out to spray the weeds in the garden!”

There are many ways to get rid of weeds. You can dig them up, burn them or poison them. For many people, the last method is ideal. They even do it when there’s just a handful of weeds to deal with. It’s quick and easy, right?

Let’s think about this for a moment.

Herbicides are toxic chemicals, and you don’t really want any of that to get into your body, regardless of how safe you think they are. Recently, Brazil’s public prosecutor wanted to ban the use of weedkillers containing glyphosate, commonly sold in stores as “Roundup” (read article here).

You need to handle any herbicides carefully. First, wear gloves (ones impermeable to chemicals) and appropriate clothing to prevent contact with your skin. If using a pressure sprayer you should also wear a mask because you don’t want to breathe in any microscopic droplets of herbicide. And eye protection. If diluting the herbicide, you will need to find a place which can be easily washed if spills occur. After use, you have to be sure to clean your gloves, clothing and the spraying equipment, ready for the next time you need them. And you have to do this safely, making sure not to splash chemicals around.

So, you still think spraying a weed is easier than just pulling or digging it out?