Professional Applicators

Asked May 9, 2016, 6:28 PM EDT

Hi eXtension, For commercial lawn services, do they need some type of license or certification to apply their pesticides and fertilzers, in order to ensure they are practicing responsible techniques? Thanks, Jon Jonathan E. Robertson 651-341-5883

Dakota County Minnesota

1 Response

Thank you for the question. We answered a question very similar to yours a few years ago and think that it provides the information and links you are requesting so we will paste the response here:

Turf professionals and others who apply herbicides, fertilizers and pesticides may carry more than one kind of certification, but the following excerpt from a University of Minnesota publication describes Minnesota's certification program.

Certification of pesticide applicators

"Under FIFRA, an applicator must be certified in order to purchase or use RUP pesticides. Certification requirements may differ between states with the applicator’s category.

The EPA has set minimum national standards of competency for the different categories of pesticide applicators. In Minnesota, a certification procedure that meets national standards is administered by the Minnesota Department of Agriculture. The Minnesota Extension Service provides the training programs for Minnesota applicators under an agreement with EPA and MDA as authorized by federal and state law. There are different training, certification and licensing requirements for commercial, noncommercial, and private pesticide applicators. It is a good idea for everyone who supervises, handles, or applies any pesticide to be certified, even if they are not required to be by law. See State Laws, page 2 - 10, for Minnesota’s pesticide applicator’s certification program."

Go here to read the rest of the bulletin:

Go here to learn about the Department of Agriculture's pesticide license requirements:

Pesticide Applicator Initial License and Renewal Requirements

University, state agency and other turf experts also educate lawn care professionals about best management practices for lawn/turf care maintenance. The program is coordinated by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency. You can learn about it at the following website. The website includes a list of those who have completed the training.

Summer Turf Grass Maintenance Program

Thank you for contacting Extension.