Posted May 19, 2012
Since 2009, the provincial government including a collection of Guelph super-environmentalists has banned the use of cosmetic herbicides. Translation: the era of dandelion weeds and other noxious weeds has taken over our parks, playgrounds and civic common areas.
The curious point is golf courses were exempted.
A study done by Health Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Agency in 2008 that found the popular weed killers containing 2-4-D meets Canada’s strict health and safety standards. And is okay to be sold and used in the country.
The pro-dandelion crowd argues that herbicide 2-4-D is a danger to the health of children. The truth is there is no evidence that the use of approved herbicides does not harm the health of anyone.
It is further evidence that the power environmentalists can bring false and flawed evidence of danger to elected bodies, thus provoking unwarranted bans of useful and approved products to control noxious weeds
The McGuinty government ignored that study when it banned use of the herbicide in most parts of the province.
In the papers this weekend there was a letter written by Guelph area farmer Peter Hannan unequivocally stating that dandelions are a curse. Recently a columnist and environmental advocate Matt Soltys, ruminated in the public prints that “those iconic yellow flowers are giving way to the fluffy orb of seeds that will scatter in the wind.”
Well, those fluffy orbs scattered and are already affecting many area croplands.
Compounding the problem the huge increase of dandelions due to last year’s wet spring and dry summer, farmers are experiencing a shortage of the herbicide to protect their croplands and pastures.
Dandelions know no borders as the seeds scatter onto farmlands outside the city limits.
Hannan spelled out the damage that dandelions do such as decimating pasture fields, fouling hay crops, and attacking croplands. He states that dandelion leaves spread out killing beneficial seeds. Hannan disputes the Soltys claim that dandelions improve the soil. He says legumes do a better job such as white clover and bird-foot trefoil that will give your lawn a trimmed, healthy appearance and does not require frequent mowing.
Guelph’s parks and common areas are awash with dandelions that have taken over once green and lush areas of which the city was justly proud. Today there is no funding for over-seeding the parks, aerating and fertilizing, to build the grasses from the invasion of noxious weeds.
Besides the dandelion, these include thistle, black medic, some clovers, plantain, spurge, knotweed, and crabgrass.
And puleez, don’t tell me again how dandelions are edible and make great wine.
I don’t see citizens out on my park digging up blooming dandelion plants for salads and, what ever.
Enough already! Let’s press the provincial government to reverse this decision banning herbicides that is affecting the beauty of our city and vital rural food producing lands on which all Ontarians are dependent.