Government of Nova Scotia Government of Nova Scotia Nova Scotia, Canada


Pests and Pesticides

Lawns and Ornamental Gardens - Non-essential Pesticides

TulipsNova Scotia property owners and lawn-care providers can plan ahead for next year now that new regulations clarify when they can buy and use pesticides.

"These regulations support legislation that will help protect the health of Nova Scotians," said Environment Minister Sterling Belliveau. "We are making it easier for the people of this province to limit their exposure to unnecessary chemicals."

The Exceptions to Prohibitions on Non-essential Pesticides Regulations follow legislation restricting the use of non-essential pesticides in Nova Scotia, passed in May 2010.

The legislation applies to lawn care and ornamental plants on residential, commercial, government, and institutional properties, such as hospitals, long-terms care facilities, schools, parks, and recreational facilities.

Forestry, agriculture (including home vegetable and fruit gardens) and golf courses are exempt.

The regulations are accompanied by a list of allowable pesticides, which includes those considered to pose a reduced risk to humans and the environment.

The sale and use of pesticides not on the list ('excepted use pesticides') will be prohibited on lawns as of April 1, 2011. The legislation will extend to ornamental shrubs, flowers and trees on April 1, 2012.

The regulations outline the circumstances in which excepted use pesticides may be used on lawns and ornamental gardens.

These circumstances include the control of  insects, plants and fungus that may:

  • be a health concern,such as European Fire Ant
  • be poisonous to the touch, such  as poison ivy
  • be an invasive species, such as Japanese Knotweed
  •  cause structural damage to buildings, such as carpenter ants

Excepted  pesticides will be available at stores with vendors certified by the Department of Environment.

Excepted pesticides must be placed in an area where consumers do not have ready access to them.  Purchasers will receive information about the legal uses of excepted pesticides from certified vendors.

The Department of Environment will conduct a public education program to help Nova Scotians switch to healthy lawn and landscaping practices.

Nova Scotia's list of allowable pesticides is based on Ontario's and the Canadian General Standards Board's lists.

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