With the arrival of spring, those of us who have been staying home and abiding by the pandemic orders and recommendations are finally able to go out, into our yards, and enjoy some freedom.
Soon we will see little bursts of yellow flowers popping up throughout our city.
Please do not use pesticides on them. Pesticides (including fungicides and herbicides) harm our pollinators and other beneficial insects.
Dandelions are the first food of the season for our bees. And, as most people are aware, bees are essential for a great many of the foods we eat. Their numbers have been dropping drastically over the years due to their exposure to pesticides.
Pesticides affect our streams and groundwater, our air and our health.
Pesticides have been linked to various health issues, including leukemia, other cancers, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s and other diseases.
People with compromised immune systems or lung problems may also be affected.
Applying pesticides to your property is exposing not only you and your family to these toxins, but your neighbours and neighbourhood, as well.
The drift from pesticides may travel quite far, affecting several other people.
Some people have an immediate reaction — for example, anaphylactic shock — which could cause them to be rushed to hospital for medical care.
Others may show symptoms later. As such, they may not make the connection to pesticides used on or near their property.
Many people have backyard hens or are beekeepers. Pesticides should not be used anywhere around them, nor anywhere that children and pets play.
Make 2021 the year you go organic if you haven’t already. Research natural, safe ways to garden and check out our local master gardeners for advice on organic gardening (search “Thompson Shuswap Master Gardeners on Facebook).
We need healthy bees, healthy foods, a healthy environment and healthy people.