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Ask the Pediatrician

Dr. Jennifer Shu and her team of pediatricians answer your health questions.

Dr. Jennifer Shu

Question & Answer

Question

How can I reduce the need to use pesticides on my lawn and protect my child?

Answer

  • ​Grow plant varieties that grow well in the area. A county extension agent or nursery personnel may have advice.
  • Time the watering and fertilizing of the plants according to their needs.
  • Follow recommendations given for mowing grass and pruning plants.
  • Decide what degree of damage from weeds, insects, and diseases can be tolerated, and do not take control measures unless that degree is exceeded.
  • Consider nonchemical options first when controls are needed. For example, determine whether weeds can be removed by hoeing or pulling.

Source: Pediatric Environmental Health, 3rd Edition (Copyright © American Academy of Pediatrics 2011)