• Link to SK Organic Resources
  • LIving Near Fields Increases Pesticide Exposure
  • Learn About Colony Collapse Disorder and How to Protect Bees
  • Grow a Lush Garden Organically
  • Learn About Pesticides in Foods
  • Learn to Keep Insects Out of your Crops
  • Weeds Can Be Managed Without Chemical Pesticides
  • Learn To Manage Weeds Without Chemical Pesticides
  • SNAP Tour of Organic Vegetable Garden
  • Driving Near Recently Sprayed Fields Exposes People to Pesticides


Weeds can be managed in a non-toxic way.

Weeds can be managed in a non-toxic way.

Elements of Organic Gardening, the Prince of Wales new book illustrates how he maintains 15 acres of immaculate ornamental and vegetable gardens on his Gloucestershire estate, Highgrove. While Prince Charles’s book is available in the United States, there is a two-year waiting list for the public to view Highgrove estate. To join the waiting list, write to the Clarence House Press Office, London SW1A 1BA, England. This book is available through the Regina Public Library.

Many resources in the notes of SNAP's Organic Gardening Class and Organic Land Care Training for Municipal Officials or Transitioning Landscapers class.

Why Organic lawn Care is so Important: Organic Gardening. US source. Some of the products allowed on lawns in the US are different than in Canada, although is is hard to tell as Canadian regulators have not been able to produce a list of domestic products for many years.

Solutions for Weeds, Lawns and Landscaping   Information on how to effectively prevent weed problems in your lawn, flower beds and shrub beds, and ecological approaches for managing existing weed problems. (NCAP)

Professional Toolbox    Non-Herbicidal Weed Control Strategies      

Ecological Management of Problem Vegetation (aka. "Invasive Weeds")   Resources (Beyond Pesticides)

The Weed's News is a place to hear the latest about weed research and share information about weed controlling and/or preventing.

Pesticide Publications - including how to (SES)

  • Dandelion Fact Sheet
  • If you can’t beat ‘em, eat ‘em: Dandelion Recipes
  • Brochure Ants Dandelion
  • 10 Steps to a Healthy Lawn Fact Sheet
  • Fact sheet Bellflower
  • Fact Sheet Creeping Charlie
  • Fact Sheet Fairy Rings
  • Fact Sheet Problem Plants Garden
  • Factsheet Quackgrass Chickweed

Iron-based herbicides (FeHEDTA/Fiesta)

Q What is the best way to control weeds in lawn?

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You can apply corn gluten meal (sold under various trade names both as a fertilizer (10% nitrogen) and as a herbicide) to the lawn to prevent weed germination. The effect builds up over the years. Don't do it prior to overseeding the lawn with grass seeds though as it will dessicate grass seedlings as well. It does not work that well when the lawn never dries out.

However, it will not deal with established weeds which have to be pulled or dealt with through better lawn care practices such as soil tests, aeration, proper mowing, overseeding and fertilizing with "live" fertilizer which provides soil and plants with the proper organisms for their health. Chip Osborne has turned around a lot of municipal properties in the U.S. with cultural methods, especially aeration, which our Regina soils are desperate for.

Q Are there any SK lawn care companies offering the natural lawn care described above?

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As of December 2012, no one has notified me that lawn care practices such as soil tests, aeration, proper mowing, overseeding and fertilizing with "live" fertilizer are being offered in SK.

In Regina, you can find companies offering aeration, but my concern with that is whether the equipment has been used on recently pesticided lawn. I am sensitive enough to pesticides that it would likely be a problem for me.

As the City of Regina was discussing reduced pesticide use and a potential bylaw in summer 2012, a lot of lawn care and pesticide industry presentations were made to the City of Regina Environmental Committee and to the Public Works committee. The natural option the Weed Man seems to offer is an iron-based herbicide which has not been accepted in eastern provinces with bylaws such as Ontario and the city of Halfax for health reasons.

Why are iron based herbicides not accepted in Ontario and Halifax?

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Iron- based herbicides are only available as commercial formulations at present.

Ontario and Halifax have not approved iron-based herbicides such as Fiesta under their pesticide bylaw. 

The hazardous materials, according to the Material Safety Data sheet, are sodium nitrate and Nitrilotriacetic acid, or NTA.The MSDS for NTA also warns of potential carcinogenic effects, and that 'the substance may be toxic to kidneys. Repeated or prolonged exposure to the substance can produce target organ damage'.”  (Fiesta/FeHEDTA Letter from the�Canadian Cancer Society)

In addition, over exposure to Iron is toxic. Any potential increase in environmental exposure to Iron through inhalation, skin absorption or ingestion following the application of Iron-based landscape products is of grave concern to the Canadian Hemochromatosis Society (www.toomuchiron.ca ).

Natural Control of Individual Weeds

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Dandelions  (NCAP)

Poison ivy and oak  (NCAP)

Everything You Need To Know About Poison Ivy. Don't let fear of poison ivy keep you out of the garden. Here's how to get rid of it for good. Deals with how to wash clothes, the rash and plants.

Non-chemical Management of Noxious Weeds
2. Lessons from Leafy Spurge and Yellow Starthistle (JOURNAL OF PESTICIDE REFORM/SPRING 1998· VOL.18, NO.1, p.2)