With the weather warming up and the sun becoming a mainstay in our daily weather forecast, many Americans are heading into their backyards to get their landscaping ready for the summer. According to national studies, 8 out of 10 Americans say that a healthy, lush lawn and garden is one of the most important features in their home. Thus, it’s no wonder we spend so much time weeding, gardening, and spraying our yards to keep them picture-perfect. But is all that fertilizer, herbicide, and pesticide good for us? Let’s dig into the science.
American Usage of Landscaping Chemicals
You might not think much of it when you go to pick up a bottle of weed killer, or a bag of grass nitrogen fertilizer. But all those little sprays and spritzes here and there, and sprinkles of fertilizer or weed suppressant here and there, add up quickly.
According to research published in the quarterly Reviews on Environmental Health peer-reviewed journal, Americans use a whopping 1 billion pounds of pesticides each year. Globally, that amounts to 5.6 billion pounds of pesticides annually. This number includes any sort of chemical or product used to control and kill unwanted insects and weeds.
“The use of pesticides has resulted in a range of benefits, including increased food production and reduction of insect-borne disease,” reports the U.S. Department of the Interior, “but also raises questions about possible adverse effects on the environment, including water quality.”
The result is a yard free of pesky pests and ugly weeds, but is there a deeper danger lurking below the surface of your lush, picture-perfect lawn?
The Health Effects of Pesticides and Fertilizers in Landscaping
“There is considerable evidence that widely used pesticides may suppress immune responses to bacteria, viruses, parasites, and tumors, making people significantly more vulnerable to disease,” warns researchers at the World Resources Institute.
For example, in one study, commonly used garden chemicals damaged your immune system’s T, B, and NK cells. “These immune cells play crucial roles in innate and adaptive immune systems to protect hosts,” notes the study. The report goes on to say that “it has been reported that pesticides may cause cancer, respiratory diseases, organ diseases, system failures, nervous system disorders and asthma, which are closely connected with immune disorders.”
And it’s not just toxic weed killers or pest killers that we need to be concerned about. According to the University of Wisconsin, fertilizers “may have a broad range of effects on human and animal health,” with especially severe impacts on your immune system, neurological system, and endocrine system.
A Better Landscaping Alternative: Natural Solutions That Protect Your Immune System
The science is clear — our usage of chemical pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers is weakening our immune systems. If you are someone who cares about the beauty and health of your landscape, the first thing you’ll want to do is support your immune system with BioPro-Plus 500. BioPro-Plus 500 is a unique dietary supplement which is clinically proven to increase CD4 cell counts. CD4 cells (T-cells) are white blood cells which play a major role in your body’s own natural immune system response. Without adequate CD4 cells, preexisting disease may run rampant in your body and you are even more vulnerable to new infections.
Once you’ve powered up your immune system with BioPro-Plus 500, it’s time to rethink your approach to landscaping. Thankfully, you can maintain a beautiful garden and lawn without resorting to toxic chemicals:
1. Instead of toxic weed killer, make your own homemade solution by combining 1 gallon of organic white vinegar and 1 tablespoon of liquid dish soap. The acidity will kill weeds, and the dish soap will also help repel pests. If you don’t plan on replanting the area (e.g., you’re trying to kill weeds in your driveway), add a cup of sea salt to prevent weeds from re-growing.
An alternative that’s even stronger can be made by combining 1 cup of powdered borax and 2 gallons of water. Borax is simply sodium borate, and it’s especially effective on weeds such as ivy and creeping charlie.
2. You can also try using boiling water. The heat and steam will immediately kill most weeds and pests. However, be cautious when using it in a planted garden bed or lawn, as the heat of the boiling water will kill things indiscriminately.
3. For pests, try neem oil. Neem oil is an all-natural pesticide derived from the seeds of the neem tree. It’s very effective against soft-bodied pests, such as aphids. And while it’s effective against bugs, it’s also safe enough that it qualifies for usage in organic gardens!