Please Stop Roadside Spraying by David Rawnsley – March 8, 2011

Please stop spraying the County roadsides with herbicides.

Please remove the line-item for the Chemical Treatment of the Counties Roadsides from the budget for the Counties’ Roads Department. Thank you.

Stop wasting our tax dollars with your roadside spraying program.

Mowing the roadsides is the most effective means of managing weeds. Only use chemicals in those situations when all other options have been exhausted.

Please send any of the above messages or one of your own to the following people:

Michael Waddell (County CAO)
Ben de Haan (County Engineer)
Steven Byvelds (Warden of the United Counties)

The Mayor and Deputy Mayor for your area:

S. Glengarry: Jim McDonell
Ian McLeod
N. Glengarry: Grant Crack
Chris McDonell
S. Stormont: Brian McGillis
Tammy Hart
N. Stormont: Denis Fife
Bill McGimpsey
S. Dundas: Steven Byvelds
James Locke
N. Dundas Eric Duncan
Gerry Boyce

Island Ink JetHomestead Organics


  1. I am for mowing but not sold on the stop spraying aspect. Is it possible that spraying will stop a few animals from getting close to the road and becoming a target?

    I would imagine the amounts and types of spray used have minute effect on local wells, however there is a tradeoff for ragweed and other alergy’s.

    I am also for the government to be reactive to the taxpayers, perhaps the area around some residents properties could be excluded from the process.

  2. A few little plant facts;

    Spraying has little effect on allergies. For every plant you see there are 1000+ in the bush.

    Water hemlock/cowbane/poison parsnip is only dangerous if eaten however it can give you a rash like poison oak/ivy/sumac if the stem is broken and the juices rubbed on the skin.

    Water hemlock looks like it’s relative wild carrot/queen anne’s lace which is benign and actually quite tasty.

    Water hemlock grows in swampy wet areas where wild carrot grows in open fielded areas so most of what you’re seeing is the benign plant.

    All plants, poison oak/ivy/sumac/parsnip can be safely cut with a lawn mower rendering spraying unnecessary.

    Spraying/mowing actually harms roadside animals by giving them access to the salt rich water in the ditches, making them likely targets for oncoming traffic.

  3. Every spring same old same thing a few against spraying.

  4. As in the past, the Province of Ontario has not sprayed along the frontage of properties that have posted a “No Spray” sign. If those landowners cut their grass and weeds then it should be fine. If they don’t do it in a timely fashion and ragweeds abound then let the Province of Ontario cut them and bill the respective landowners! Thats fair! Of course billing would include the two men sent to mow, wear-and-tear on the mower, the truck and driver that carries the mower and the foreman and his pickup that oversee the operation. Together with travelling time for all included it should amount to a very healthy bill!

  5. I’m 100% with you on this David…so are the bees, birds and animals that appreciate this small band of habitat when it is not sprayed as it offers the only diverse habitat to find food and shelter that the acres of monoculture (such as corn) are sadly missing. Furthmore… introducing cancer causing agents; chemicals into our circle of life just doesn’t make sense to me. This is in my eyes, is disrespectful to all life forms.

  6. Once again, peoples lack of understanding of why roadside weed spraying is done as well as the true cost of the alternatives is becoming apparent. I find it amazing the volume of “opinion” people have on subjects that they have taken little to no time to become educated on. Before making any decision, the consequences and cost (both envrionmental and monetary) need to be considered. Believe it or not, roadside managers don’t spray for fun – they do it because it makes the most sense and they have a much better understanding of the situation than the general public. But I am sure this will bring on more highly educated comments as to why it should be banned.

  7. To Dirk – Please provide the exact studies that you used to come to your learned “opinion” as I have not seen these. Thanks. Your answer seems like a “they say” type of comment.

  8. PMRA (Health Canada) has all the required studies they need to support the safe, effective use of herbicides. The decision to register a herbicide in Canada is not taken lightly and all of the products are closely scrutinized.

    As for the mowing question, I will refer readers to a 50 year research study done in the US that does not support the use of mowing as being more friendly to the environment, nor is it as effective. Check out the Bramble and Byrnes Research on the Game lands 33 site that has been extensivley published in the Journal of Arboriculture. I would also suggest that folks should consider the fossil fuel and habitat destraution that takes place when mowing is done.

    I would be interested in similar peer reviewed studies that refute these long term findings and support the wildlife concerns mentioned by others.

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