Home and Landscape


Urban Pesticides, Fertilizers, and Water Quality

UC IPM Resources

Pesticide Active Ingredient Database–UC IPM’s list of commonly available pesticides for consumers and urban pest professionals with safety and environmental information about their use.
Urban Pesticide Use Survey Studies–Brief descriptions of UC IPM studies on pesticides in urban areas of California.
UC IPM WaterTox–Database of water-related risks of active ingredients.

Pest Notes

Hiring a Pest Control Company
Pesticides: Safe Use and Effective Use

Quick Tips

Garden Chemicals: Safe Use & Disposal
Keep Our Water Clean
Landscape Design & Water Quality
Landscape Plants: Fertilizing & Watering
Less Toxic Insecticides
What is IPM?

En Español

Pesticidas: Uso Seguro y Eficaz en el Hogar y en Jardines (Pesticides: Safe Use and Effective Use)

Quick Tips (Notas Breves)

Diseño del jardín y la calidad del agua (Landscape Design & Water Quality)
Fertilización del césped (Lawn Fertilizing)
Insecticidas menos tóxicos (Less Toxic Insecticides)
Manejo integrado de plagas (What Is IPM?)
Mantener el agua limpia (Keep Our Water Clean)
Plantas para el jardín: fertilizantes y riego (Landscape Plants: Fertilizing & Watering)
Uso y desecho seguro de pesticidas (Safe Use and Disposal of Pesticides)

Additional Resources

Pesticide Problem Reporting Tool–Information on reporting pesticide problems to the California Department of Pesticide Regulation.
Protecting Water Quality from Urban Runoff–US EPA resource for water quality in urban areas (PDF).
Water Quality Testing–Information on testing drinking water quality for Californians.
Groundwater Quality Results–An interactive map from USGS that allows you to see pesticide detections in groundwater across California.
Pesticides in the Nation’s Streams and Ground Water (USGS)–Evaluations of pesticides in streams and ground water based on findings from 1992 to 2001.
Water Quality Goals Database–Search for California-specific water quality thresholds for over 800 chemicals.
Surface Water Protection Program–A program by the Department of Pesticide Regulation focused on preventing pesticides from adversely affecting our surface waters.
National Pesticide Information Center–General information about water and pesticides, as well as fact sheets for commonly used pesticides.
The California State Water Resources Control Board–Information about water quality issues and water pollution prevention for the general public.

Suggested Reading

Aquatic Toxicity Due to Residential Use of Pyrethroid Insecticides. 2005. Weston DP, Holmes RW, You J, Lydy M. Environ. Sci. Technol. 2005, 39, 24, 9778–9784. (Accessed Sep. 19, 2023).
Biological indicators for pollution detection in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. 2020. Zaghloul A, Saber M, Gadow, S. et al. Bull Natl Res Cent 44, 127. (Accessed Aug. 23, 2023).
Fipronil washoff to municipal wastewater from dogs treated with spot-on products. 2017. Teerlink J, Hernandez J, Budd R. Sci Total Environ. Dec 1;599-600:960-966. (Accessed Sep. 19, 2023).
Fiproles in urban surface runoff: Understanding sources and causes of contamination. 2019. Cryder Z, Greenberg L, Richards J, Wolf D, Luo Y, Gan J. Environ Pollut. Jul; 250:754-761. (Accessed Sep. 19, 2023).
Occurrence of fipronil and its biologically active derivatives in urban residential runoff. 2012. Gan J, Bondarenko S, Oki L, Haver D, Li JX. Environ Sci Technol. Feb 7;46(3):1489-95. (Accessed Sep. 19, 2023).
Passage of fiproles and imidacloprid from urban pest control uses through wastewater treatment plants in northern California, USA. 2017. Sadaria AM, Sutton R, Moran KD, Teerlink J, Brown JV, Halden RU. Environ Toxicol Chem. Jun;36(6):1473-1482. (Accessed Sep. 19, 2023).
Patterns of Pyrethroid Contamination and Toxicity in Agricultural and Urban Stream Segments. 2008. CM Ng, Weston DP, You J, Lydy MJ. Synthetic Pyrethroids. Chapter 16 pp 355-369. (Accessed Sep. 19, 2023).
Pyrethroid insecticides in municipal wastewater. 2013. Weston DP, Ramil HL, Lydy MJ. Environ Toxicol Chem. 2013 Nov 32(11):2460-8. (Accessed Sep. 19, 2023).
Pyrethroid insecticides and sediment toxicity in urban creeks from California and Tennessee. 2006. Amweg EL, Weston DP, You J, Lydy MJ. 2006. Environ Sci Technol. Mar 1;40(5):1700-6. (Accessed Sep. 19, 2023).
Runoff of pyrethroid insecticides from concrete surfaces following simulated and natural rainfalls. 2012. Jiang W, Haver D, Rust M, Gan J. Water Res. 2012 Mar 1;46(3):645-52. (Accessed Sep. 19, 2023).
Stormwater-related transport of the insecticides bifenthrin, fipronil, imidacloprid, and chlorpyrifos into a tidal wetland, San Francisco Bay, California. 2015. Weston DP, Chen D, Lydy MJ. Sci Total Environ. Sep 15;527-528:18-25. (Accessed Sep. 19, 2023).
SWAMP IQ Bioassessment. 2023. California State Water Resources Control Board. Sacramento, CA. (Accessed Aug. 23, 2023).
Toxicity of Pesticides. 2020. Nesheim ON, Fishel FM, Mossler M. Publication PI-13. University of Florida Extension. Gainesville, FL. (Accessed Aug. 23, 2023).