Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Organic Landscaping Safer for People and the Environment

As the lawn chemical companies hit the advertising airwaves this Spring," the National Coalition for Pesticide-Free Lawns is urging homeowners and land managers to reject toxic pesticides and synthetic, petroleum-based fertilizers and instead adopt organic products and practices. The Coalition is a consortium of public health and environmental groups and landscapers nationwide that points to the long list of scientific studies documenting the human health, wildlife, pet, and environmental hazards associated with pesticide products used by the typical commercial lawn care companies and sold at lawn and garden centers.

Chemical lawn pesticides are linked in the scientific literature to cancer in people and pets, and are known to be toxic to the nervous and immune system, endocrine disruptors, and tied to respiratory effects such as asthma. Organic practices rely on maintenance techniques and soil health that prevent unwanted insect and weeds.

The Coalition promotes A Simple Guide to Creating a Healthy Lawn, Read Your "Weeds," for parks, lawns and playing fields this Spring that addresses the whole turf system, including developing healthy soil, maintaining a proper pH balance, selection of appropriate grasses and other plants, aeration of compacted soil, timely thatch removal, and proper mowing, correct watering, and organic fertilizing methods.

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