Herbicide used in FL as a cure-all is more like a kill-all

Article Reference: Herbicide used in FL as a cure-all is more like a kill-all

By Craig Pittman

“Can you imagine what life was like for Florida’s earliest occupants?

Think of the unrelenting heat that led them to name so many places after Hell. Think of the rugged terrain, full of sharp-edged sawgrass and thorny thickets blocking every effort to pass. Think of how hard it was to combat all the skeeters and no-see-ums without the benefit of bug spray. Think of how stinky those settlers must have been!

The land was largely pristine then, but no one was calling this place “paradise.”

Such hardships are a big reason why Florida was the least populated Southern state in 1940. Historians say two inventions sparked our surge in population to 22 million: air conditioning and insecticide.

Our ease with those artificial ingredients that make life livable here tends to blind us to the consequences of what we do to control nature. Take how we handle those thorny thickets now, for instance.

Got some little things growing in your yard other than socially acceptable St. Augustine sod? Want to get rid of them? Since 1974, the solution for that problem has been a weedkiller known as Roundup, manufactured by chemical giant Monsanto. The stuff is used, as I read on one alliteratively inclined website, in “agriculture and aquatics” as well as “from forestry to flower beds.””

Read More