KENTON – A class to help farmers prepare to become private pesticide applicators has been planned for Janu. 26 at the Hardin County Extension office, 1021 W. Lima St., Kenton.

In Ohio, pesticide applicators are required by law to have an Ohio Pesticide Applicators License in order to purchase and apply restricted-use chemicals. These pesticides include but are not limited to herbicides, insecticides, and fungicides. This class will begin at 12:30 p.m. and end at 4:30 p.m. There is a $30 registration fee which covers books for those enrolled.

The class will emphasize the two main categories that most Hardin County pesticide applicators need, which are Core (applying pesticides properly and safely), as well as Grain and Cereal Crops. Resources will be shared for other categories that are available for certification, which include Forage Crops & Livestock, Fruit & Vegetable Crops, Nursery & Forest Crops, Greenhouse Crops, Fumigation, and Specialty Uses. Once a trainee has properly prepared for their pesticide license, they can schedule to take a test at an Ohio Department of Agriculture testing site. Ohio Pesticide Licenses are good for three years, and then the applicator must recertify by attending a three-hour recertification meeting before license expiration or re-test.

There are several reasons why someone may wish to become a private pesticide applicator. These reasons may include that they plan to take over the pesticide certification for their farm due to retirement or a change in responsibilities, they plan to use restricted-use chemicals in addition to

general-use chemicals to have more options to control problem weeds or pests, or they are new to spraying pesticides on the farm. The course is not designed for commercial pesticide applicators, as they must get training directly from the Ohio Department of Agriculture. Instructors for the class include Extension Educators Dennis Riethman, Mercer County; Matt Schmerge, Shelby County; and Mark Badertscher, Hardin County. Those planning to participate in the class need to call the Extension office at 419-674-2297 by Jan. 19 to register.