2012 Highlights: UC IPM Annual Report

Hands-on training supplemented classroom instruction.Hands-on training supplemented classroom instruction. Photo by C. Wilen.

Wildland and park managers learn better ways to spray herbicides


  • A new sprayer-calibration training program teaches managers to apply herbicides to weeds in natural areas more effectively.
  • The training focuses on properly calibrating backpack sprayers often used in wildlands and parks.

Training designed specifically for wildland and park managers who need to apply herbicides to combat invasive weeds has seldom been offered ... until now. Yet sprayer calibration and proper application techniques are important to apply herbicides effectively and safely, and with minimal damage to air and water quality and the environment. Now UC IPM Advisor Cheryl Wilen, Southern California UC Cooperative Extension advisors Chris McDonald and Carl Bell, and UC Riverside Cooperative Extension Specialist Milt McGiffen are providing the specific training wildland and park managers need.

In addition to learning how to properly calibrate their sprayers, attendees learned techniques for spot-spraying weeds, which herbicides to use, and the ecological impact of invasive weeds and their management. Tests given before and after the training show that attendees increased their knowledge and plan to use and share the information they gained. The information will help land managers save time and money while, most importantly, helping them more safely use and apply herbicides.

Two training sessions held in Southern California were well attended by Resource Conservation District and local park employees as well as wildland managers and people from other agencies. Half the day was classroom instruction, while the other half was hands-on training in the field.

> Next article: New tools and training for growers

Statewide IPM Program, Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of California
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