replanting with vegetables after a crossbow application

Asked June 5, 2017, 9:21 PM EDT

I had several small volunteer trees taken down along with an old climbing rose five weeks ago. Stumps were applied with Crossbow systemic herbicide followed in three weeks by stump grinding. Is it safe to use this area to plant vegetables this year? Do the chemicals eventually break down, or should I never plant edibles in this space? Thanks!

Multnomah County Oregon

1 Response

Thank you for your question about Crossbow (triclopyr). Although the herbicide's label says it is safe for humans and animals to walk on plants that have been sprayed with Crossbow once it has dried, it also cautions that lactating cattle should not eat any foliage that has been sprayed until the next growing season. The label also notes:

"Excessive amounts of this herbicide in the soil may temporarily inhibit seed germination and plant growth."

Although this OSU source may be outdated (by its own description), It indicates that it has a half life in the soil varying from 1.1 to 90 days (so would be entirely degraded in 180 days maximum).

I believe the warnings and science would indicate that you need not keep vegetables from this site forever, but that the better part of valor would be to wait until next year. Hope this is helpful. Good luck!