Montgomery Parks Integrated Pest Management Program and Pesticide Use

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Montgomery Parks Integrated Pest Management Program and Pesticide Use

Montgomery Parks manages more than 37,000 acres of parkland including 424 parks, 276 playgrounds, 342 athletic fields and many other amenities. The Department follows Integrated Pest Management (IPM) principles to steward resources and protect them from pests (weeds, insects, animals and diseases) that may harm people or plants, impair function, and deteriorate infrastructure. IPM means managing pests by combining multiple strategies and techniques such as mechanical removal of pests, cultural methods to improve soil and plant health, conserving and introducing beneficial biological controls, and using organic as well as conventional pesticides.  The Parks Department does not use pesticides for cosmetic purposes. Pesticides are used as a last resort to control noxious and invasive pests, maintain safe and playable athletic fields and courts, and prevent significant economic damage, including degradation of park infrastructure. Staff who apply pesticides and fertilizers are certified and registered with the Maryland Department of Agriculture. Montgomery Parks is committed to balancing the demand for recreation while protecting and conserving our valuable natural and cultural resources to meet the needs of current and future generations.

What is Montgomery County Code 33B?
County Code Chapter 33B went into effect July 1, 2016.  The code presents guidelines for pesticide use in Montgomery County, including on county property and parkland. The goal of the code “is to inform the public about pesticide applications and minimize the use of pesticides for cosmetic purposes, while not restricting the ability to use pesticides in agriculture, for the protection of public health, or for other public benefit.”   Learn more about Montgomery County’s pesticide law.

What is Montgomery Parks doing to comply with the law? 
Montgomery Parks continues to implement IPM strategies to ensure chemical pesticides are used as a last resort.   Montgomery Parks manages all playgrounds, community gardens and common lawn areas within local parks without the use of pesticides.  In 2016, Montgomery Parks designated ten pesticide-free parks.  In September 2019, the program expanded to 45 pesticide-free parks.  From FY2014 to FY2018 Montgomery Parks’ pesticide expenditure decreased 73%.

To learn more about pesticide use in Montgomery Parks visit the Frequently Asked Questions.

 

Scheduled Pesticide Applications

The below table includes a schedule of upcoming pesticide applications.*  The list is updated to provide at least 48-hour notice for applications.

Park Name Planned
Application Date
Planned Application Time Area To Be Treated Application Details
North Branch Stream Valley Park Unit 3 11/2 – 11/20/2020
*Dates extended
7:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Natural Areas Meadows Garlon 3A and/or Rodeo will be applied as a bark or cut stump treatment with potential for additional foliar treatment to target invasive weeds to restore habitat & protect ecosystem
Brookside Gardens 11/9 – 11/13/20 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. tree circles and planting beds Ranger Pro will be sprayed to target selective grass & broadleaf weeds to suppress plant growth
Olney Manor Recreational Park 11/9 – 11/13/20 6:00 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. landscape beds Snapshot will be sprayed to target selective grass & broadleaf weeds to protect plantings
Cherrywood Local Park  11/23 – 11/27/20
*New Dates
6:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. soccer field Fiesta will be sprayed to target broadleaf weeds to support plant/turf health
Bowie Mill Local Park 11/23 – 11/27/20
*New Dates
6:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. soccer fields 1 and 2 Fiesta will be sprayed to target broadleaf weeds to support plant/turf health
Sundown Road Local Park 11/23 – 11/27/20
*New Dates
6:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. baseball fields 1 and 2 Fiesta will be sprayed to target broadleaf weeds to support plant/turf health
Red Door Store Historical/Cultural Park 11/30 – 12/4/20
*New Dates
7:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. natural areas/meadows, between Layhill Rd and the stream in the middle of the site. From Rel’s Mulch Yard on the northern end, down toward Norbeck Rd on the southern end Garlon 3A and/or Rodeo will be applied as a bark or stump treatment to target invasive weeds to restore habitat & protect ecosystem
North Germantown Greenway Stream Valley Park 11/30 – 12/11/2020 7:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. natural areas/meadows throughout stream valley Garlon 3A and/or Rodeo will be applied as a bark or stump treatment to target invasive weeds to restore habitat & protect ecosystem

*Montgomery Parks staff make every effort to notify the community on this webpage when a pesticide application is scheduled in a public area. Dates of applications may change or be canceled due to weather; also, occasional emergency applications may be needed.

On-site Signage Procedures:

  • White prenotification signs are placed in advance of an application to playing fields, managed turf and treatments within 25 feet of a stream or creek. The signs list the planned application date, product and the reason for the application.
  • Yellow signs are installed at the site at the time of application and remain in place at least 48 hours following the pesticide application. For more information, call the phone number listed on the back of the sign.

Please contact Montgomery Parks if you have any questions.


 

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Last Updated: November 20, 2020