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Organic ??

Julia A. Keith Julia.A.Keith at DARTMOUTH.EDU
Fri Jan 13 09:24:49 EST 1995

--- Forwarded Message from Julia A. Keith ---

>Date: 13 Jan 95 09:23:24 EST
>From: Julia A. Keith
>Subject: Re: insects on your ficus
>To: woodwards at agresearch.cri.nz (Simon Woodward)

woodwards at agresearch.cri.nz (Simon Woodward) wrote:

I use Pyrethrum on my plants, which I understand is the extract of a flower. 
Is this a "harmful pesticide"?

Where does alcohol come from anyway :-) It might be a harmful pesticide!

What about disposal of used cotton swabs :-)


Is pyrethrum a harmful pesticide?

Yes-it kills bugs indescriminately-beneficials and pests.  It may not be
incredibly toxic to people, and it does come from a botanical source, but
there's no specificity to  it.

Is alcohol a harmful pesticide?-yes if you spray it on your plants, no if you
dab it on the individual bugs-the way you get the specificity is by your own
hard work.

Disposal of cotton swabs?  Alcohol evaporates, so I suppose a well ventilated
room takes care of the amount you'd use on a plant with mealy bugs.  Cotton
swabs biodegrade, as long as you don't get the ones with plastic sticks.

Your point is well taken though-there are no easy answers.  I just wanted to
emphasize that taking the word of the back of a pestcide bottle for the best
way to deal with a pest problem may be appealing because it's easy, but it has
a lot of drawbacks.

Julie Keith

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