Pesticide Licensing in Illinois
Questions often arise as to the need for a pesticide application
license when applying pesticides. When a homeowner needs to use
a pesticide for a plant pest problem of some type, rarely is a pesticide
license needed. When pesticide application is part of a job description,
however, chances are pesticide license is required. In addition,
pesticides are labeled as either general use or restricted use.
Restricted use pesticides cannot be purchased without a pesticide
If you are applying restricted use pesticides to produce an agricultural
commodity on property you own or control, a Private Pesticide Applicator
License is required. This includes farmers, nurserymen, Christmas
tree growers, fruit and vegetable growers, wholesale greenhouse
plant growers, sod growers, and home gardeners if they are using
restricted use pesticides.
Contact your local University of Illinois Extension office for
information on training clinics to be offered in your area this
winter. If your current license needs renewal or you need to retest,
you receive notice from the Illinois Department of Agriculture,
which is the pesticide regulatory agency in Illinois.
The other main type of license is the Commercial Pesticide Applicator
and Operator Licenses. These are required for applying any type
of pesticide as a service or on land or areas readily used by the
public. Examples include employees of landscape and lawn care services,
golf courses, park districts, indoor plant maintenance companies,
municipal groundskeepers, consultants, and similar areas.
All of these commercial users must be certified to use any pesticideseven
if the pesticide is general use and available to anyone at the local
garden center. Operator Licenses require passing the General Standards
Exam; and then supervisors must pass the appropriate Applicator
License categories depending on what the business does, such as
lawn care or tree care. All operators must have a licensed applicator
as a supervisor.
General Standards training and testing will be offered in a variety
of locations during the winter and early spring months. Training
for various categories, such as turfgrass and ornamentals; will
also be offered. Contact your local University of Illinois Extension
Office for commercial training dates available in your area this
December 2001 - January 2002: Pointsettas
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