Pesticide Safety for Home Gardening


Gardeners with children should pay particular attention to proper use of pesticides. The American Association of Poison Control Centers reports that in 2002, poison centers received more than 96,000 calls regarding exposure to pesticides—more than half involving children under age six.

Pesticides are, of course, designed to eliminate insects and rodents. The chemicals used to accomplish this are dangerous to humans and pets as well if used incorrectly. The rules of thumb for safe handling of pesticides include:

When Buying Pesticides:

When Using Pesticides:

After Using Pesticides:

In Case of Poisoning:

The American Association of Poison Control Centers urges gardeners to be safe and to keep the poison emergency hotline number, 1-800-222-1222, near all telephones. Safe practices are what make gardening a relaxing and rewarding hobby.

Pharmacists, nurses, and physicians at local poison centers (1-800-222-1222) are also available to answer questions about pesticides and pesticide safety, and to provide poison education materials like brochures and stickers. Poison experts are available round-the-clock, seven days a week.

Poison information is also available at the AAPCC Web site,

For more information: Chris Falk, AAPCC Media Director, at 202/363-7657

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