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Home Farming Tips How To Use Farm Chemicals Safely

How To Use Farm Chemicals Safely

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Spray at the right time

If you are observant, you will not miss noticing a whitish powder on fruits and vegetables in the market, the most common being tomatoes.

Farmers spray tomatoes with Mancozeb, a fungicide even after harvesting them thinking that this will protect them from rotting before they are sold. Mancozeb prevents fungal attacks.

Crops sprayed with this chemical should not be harvested before the eighth day after the last spray.

A fruit sprayed with this chemical will be poisonous and hence not fit for human consumption before the recommended withdraw period is over.

Some vendors wash the fruits and you will hence miss the powder. You should also be aware that this is only possible for powders, but other liquid chemical leave no observable deposits, but they are in tissues of fruits and vegetables we consume.

 Prepare right dosages

Farmers always prepare higher dosages than the recommended because they believe that they will kill the pest faster, which is not true.

Smell-less good too

Many farmers think that chemicals with a strong smell are better performers in the field compared to the non-smelling alternatives. This is also not true. Usually smelly chemicals are more poisonous.

Do not mix inside spray tanks

Many farmers mix several chemicals in their spray tanks thinking that the mixture will be more active. This is another dangerous practice. In some cases, due to differences in chemistries (PH levels), a farmer will end up with a less active mixture that will not be strong enough to fight the pest.

Apply for the right environment

Do not use outdoor chemicals indoors to control household pests. Many outdoor pesticides are designed to break down into less toxic substances in daylight and rain. Without these conditions, the pesticides may linger and cause toxic conditions for humans and pets.

Read labels properly

When the label instructions are not followed correctly, plant injury may occur, pests may not be controlled, health may be impaired and pesticides may contribute to soil, air or water pollution.

Wear protective clothes

Farmers must wear protective clothing to protect them from exposure to chemicals. As a minimum, a protective gear should include rubber gloves, eye protection, a long-sleeved shirt, long pants and closed shoes. Avoid using cotton gloves or lightweight dust masks.

These may absorb the spray and result in prolonged contact with your skin. Take a bath immediately after spraying.

However, do some washing outside before using the bathroom. Remember to wash clothes separately from other laundry. Never smoke, drink, eat or use the bathroom after application of pesticides without washing first.

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