ROGUE RIVER, Ore. – Home gardeners will face new pesticide restrictions after two massive bee deaths within the past week.
The Oregon Department of Agriculture is temporarily banning the application of two active ingredients — dinotefuran and imidacloprid — on linden trees and other similar ornamentals. Improper use of those pesticides is believed to be responsible for hundreds of bees found dead in Eugene and Beaverton.
Local beekeepers say the ban is a good start, but bees are still in jeopardy due to parasites and lack of forage.
They say if pesticides are avoided or at least used properly, landscaping and ornamentals can be a huge boon to all pollinators – including bees, hummingbirds, and butterflies.
“If there’s one thing citizens can do to really help the plight of pollinators, it would be to landscape accordingly — drought-tolerant stuff that blooms later in the season or blooms early and actually feeds something,” said John Jacob, President of the Southern Oregon Beekeepers Association. “Lawns do not feed anything.”
The ODA previously required newly-labelled products containing dinotefuran and imidacloprid to contain a warning prohibiting their use on linden trees and similar ornamentals. The new, outright ban on those products will last 180 days.