Tomato Plants
Q.

Surge Pesticide

Zone 49090 | gardener dan added on June 13, 2018 | Answered

If your vegetable garden was inadvertently sprayed with Surge Broadleaf Herbicide for Turf if any plants survive ro recover, would they be safe to eat, say greens or tomatoes or cucumbers. My lawn company got carries away and my 16 by 6 foot raised vegetable bed got a lot of spray of it though careless and reckless application of Surge. Is the present plants a loss and not safe to eat. Things were really looking so good and I raised much from seed, spending many hours and a lot of money. It was my dream to have this and now it look pretty bad and getting worse, it happened yesterday. I have contacted the company about this negligence and misapplication of the product and am waiting to hear from them. Right now I am worried that is is a complete loss, the plants contaminated, wilting and in some cases dying slowly. If any survive and bear fruit, or have fruit, fear from what I read that it's all contaminated. I has no idea they were using such a strong toxic product. Can you answer my questions/ Thank you, Dan Pierce, South Haven, MI

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drtreelove
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on June 14, 2018

I'm a licensed pesticide applicator in California, Michigan may not have the same kind of county applicator registraion, but here's the state dept:

https://www.michigan.gov/mdard/0,4610,7-125-2762---C,00.html

https://www.michigan.gov/mdard/0,4610,7-125-2762---C,00.html

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drtreelove
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on June 14, 2018

Dan, I'm really sorry to hear of this incident and your loss.

Surge is a cocktail of 4 potent broadleaf herbicides which present some serious risk from exposure. Here's the SDS (Safety Data Sheet) for your review.

https://www.domyown.com/msds/Surge-MSDS.pdf

Note # 4. First Aid Measures and indications for ingestion: possible gastrointestinal irritation, vomiting, pain in chest and abdomen and diarrhea. The relative low concentration in an accidental over-spray like this is not likely to cause these severe reactions, but if I were you I would not take a chance.

The company needs to get a wake up call and tighten up on their applicator training and safety practices. If they are otherwise competent and you don't want to put them out of business, ask that they report your complaint to the county agricultural commissioner that licensed them, "or do you want me to report it?" sort of thing. They will save some face by taking responsibility for their mistake, get a "violation" and a small fine, and a review of their program. Which is a good thing for them, for you and for their other customers. You will get a professional review of the incident and knowledgeable advise on the details of the exposure and risk.
By the way, the active ingredients in Surge are known to cause harm to sensitive trees with roots extending into the lawn areas being treated, due to root uptake, even without any foliar contact. The herbicide contamination shows up as leaf curling and discoloration and sometimes branch die-back.
Maybe it's time to consider organic lawn care.

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