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BeSure! to Follow Best Stewardship Practices for Treated Seed

April 29, 2020

As 2020 planting in the Midwest kicks off for some and continues for others, we encourage both growers and applicators to use best stewardship practices to protect pollinators and other wildlife. The Growing Matters coalition recently launched its BeSure! stewardship-awareness campaign to help growers and applicators “be sure” they follow best-management practices when using treated seed and other neonic products this season. Listen for more information below:

When using treated seed, one of the most important stewardship practices to follow is to always read and follow label directions. Labels are frequently updated and outline storage, use and disposal information.

You should also use a seed lubricant, among other actions, when planting treated seed to minimize dust-off. Be sure to:

  • Follow recommendations from planter manufacturers for the use of fluency agents or lubricants.
  • Eliminate flowering plants and weeds in and immediately adjacent to the field prior to planting seeds treated with a pollinator sensitive insecticide.
  • Observe wind speed and direction to avoid dust drift from treated seeds to sensitive areas during planting.

Seed treatment stewardship doesn’t end when the seed is in the ground, either. Be prepared to responsibly dispose of any extra treated seed left over this season.

  • With small quantities of treated seed, be sure to return excess treated seed to its original seed lot containers, if the seed is intended for storage and subsequent planting.
  • You can also plant leftover treated seed in fallow or other non-cropped areas, or be double planted in the turn rows at the end of the field or within a portion of the field, if in accordance to the seed treatment product label.
  • For larger quantities of treated seed, consult state and local authorities to be sure regulations are followed. Contact disposal facilities to ensure they have an EPA permit to accept pesticide treated seed.

Following these steps will help protect pollinators and other wildlife during the handling, planting and disposal of treated seed. For additional information about seed treatment stewardship, please visit www.growingmatters.org/besure.

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