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There's an apiary of mine next to a hay field. The guy who owns it tells me that it's sprayed occasionally for weeds. It's also sprayed with fertilizer.

It's not downwind of the bees, but the edge is about 30 feet away from my hives.

Nothing else is sprayed in this area - but boy do the farmers love their sprays.

Should I find a new apiary site, or will that not harm them?
 

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get a copy of the data sheet for the chemicals and go look them up, the label tells you all you need to know.
 

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he is probably using grazon next or pasture pro herbicide. animals can graze on it 24 hours after application. it has no insecticide in it. if he sprays fertilizer, it is more than likely 28, with is water with 28 percent nitrogen. potassium or phosphorus is another fertilizer application. i dont see any of affecting your bees. i farm gmo corn and soybeans, also have a fruit orchard and use applicable sprays as necessary. farmers dont willy nilly spray. applications are expensive and farmers are frugal.
 

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he is probably using grazon next or pasture pro herbicide. animals can graze on it 24 hours after application. it has no insecticide in it. if he sprays fertilizer, it is more than likely 28, with is water with 28 percent nitrogen. potassium or phosphorus is another fertilizer application. i dont see any of affecting your bees. i farm gmo corn and soybeans, also have a fruit orchard and use applicable sprays as necessary. farmers dont willy nilly spray. applications are expensive and farmers are frugal.
I'm not really worried about the herbicide on the grass, because there's not much forage.

I'm worried that it'll drift in the wind into the hives, a stray gust going the wrong direction.

The owner said something about how it wasn't round-up, but he didn't know the name of the product.
 

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Some hayfields get insecticide sprays, that's what I'd worry about. Herbicide not so much.
 

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I do not know about your part of the country but here when the army worms start eating the grass in the hay fields they spray insecticides.
 

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I do not know about your part of the country but here when the army worms start eating the grass in the hay fields they spray insecticides.
This^^^^

When I had hay fields and AW showed up, you had to act fast and the insecticides can be bad mojo for bees. Most times it depended on what the ag store had ready to put out, but I recall malathion and a type of Seven (been some years). Generally AW are a problem in the last half of summer when it is dry and hot.

Best way to find out is a deeper discussion with the field owner directly about pesticide use.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
This^^^^

When I had hay fields and AW showed up, you had to act fast and the insecticides can be bad mojo for bees. Most times it depended on what the ag store had ready to put out, but I recall malathion and a type of Seven (been some years). Generally AW are a problem in the last half of summer when it is dry and hot.

Best way to find out is a deeper discussion with the field owner directly about pesticide use.
The owner didn't mention anything about pesticides.

He definitely mentioned that the fields are given fertilizer and herbicides.
This is northern PA.
 

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Fert and herbicide are pretty "normal". My 1st of the year was sprayed liquid just to allow the herbicide to be mixed and applied at the same time as the liquid fertilizer. Never needed herbicide after the 1st outing, so then on we use granular fertilizer.

Down here, AW become a bigger problem I'd say after June, dry and hot seems to be the time they can show in devastating numbers, I have seen 100 acre fields turned to stubble in 2-3 days.

Your field owner may have never had to treat for them, doesn't read like it is as big a problem as you move North, but seems the problem is growing under certain circumstances.

Here is a link toPA
https://extension.psu.edu/true-armyworm-is-active


If all your guy uses is the fert and herbicide, I wouldn't worry to much, I'd bet he doesn't use the herbicide on every outing as well.
 

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In Pennsylvania, it is very unlike any farmer will be spraying hay field with insecticide. Herbicides acceptable for spraying on hay will not impact your bees even with drifting which is very unlikely since it costs too much to spray and not get all the chemicals in the right area. If he is doing the spraying himself, he is too cheap to pay the professionals to do it and will make sure it is not too windy when he does spray. And the professionals will not spray when there is a chance of drift from wind so they can keep their insurance. And while the safety of Roundup is being questioned in the courts right now, that is not something that would be sprayed on a hay field unless they were converting it to beans or corn. Overall, being near a hay field is a great way to get great tasting honey, my hives near them always out perform every other one I have.
 
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