Pesticide application on green spaces, golf courses and for pest management
Pesticides are sometimes used for the maintenance of green spaces and golf courses, as well as for pest management. Pesticides should be used as little as possible and products that are least harmful to human health and the environment should be preferred. This is why companies must be licensed and users certified to apply pesticides in these sectors. Compliance with specific rules is also mandatory.
Permit and certificate requirements
If your company applies pesticides for green space or golf course maintenance, it will need to hold a Sub-class C4 or D4 Application for ornamental horticulture permit.
If you personally apply pesticides, you will need to hold a Sub-class CD4 Application for ornamental horticulture certificate or be supervised by an on-site holder of this type of certificate. See the list of conditions (French) for details on lawn application of pesticides without holding a certificate.
If your company applies pesticides for pest management, it will need to hold a Sub-class C5 or D5 permit Application for extermination permit.
If you personally apply pesticides for this purpose, you will need to hold a Sub-class CD5 Application for extermination certificate or be supervised by an on-site holder of this type of certificate.
If your company fumigates with the following types of gases in closed or confined spaces, it must hold an Application par fumigation (sub-class C6 or D6) permit:
- Methyl bromide
- Carbon dioxide
- Sulfuryl fluoride
- Ethylene oxide
If you fumigate with the above pesticides, you must hold an Application par fumigation (sub-class CD6) certificate or work under the supervision of a holder of this type of certificate who is on-site when the activity is carried out.
If you are a permit holder, you must keep and retain a register of your pesticide purchases, sales and utilization. Depending on your type of permit, you may use the registre d’achat et d’utilisation de pesticides – permis de catégorie C (DOC 0.90 Mb) template or the registre d’achat et d’utilisation de pesticides – permis de catégorie D (DOC 555 Kb) one.
Rules for pesticide use
Mixing class 1, 2 or 3 commercial pesticides and filling or emptying a sprayer must be performed in a retention facility.
- Pesticides must be used in accordance with label instructions. Only approved pesticides may be used in residential areas;
- No one other than persons involved in the application should be on-site nor exposed to the pesticides used;
- Pets must not be exposed to the pesticides;
- Surfaces and/or objects not to be treated must not be contaminated;
- All building entranceways must be shut to avoid pesticide infiltration;
- Compliance with the distances for the storage, preparation and application of pesticides for agricultural purposes (PDF 232 Kb) distancing table is mandatory.
The following rules apply to green space maintenance:
- Some pesticides are not meant for lawn application. Check the names of prohibited commercial pesticides (French) prior to use;
- Do not apply pesticides mixed with fertilizers on lawn surfaces;
- Post a sign (PDF 444 Kb) (French) at all access points if the area is fenced in after applying a pesticide to a lawn or paved surface or on trees and ornamental shrubs. If the area is not fenced in, signs must be posted every 20 metres;
- For golf courses, signage (PDF 477 Kb) (French) must be posted at the sign-in desk and at each treated tee-off of treated holes.
If you apply aerosol treatment for pest management, the following is mandatory:
- Do not use foggers inside residential buildings;
- Post a sign (PDF 495 Kb) (French) at every access point when work begins.
Compliance with the by-laws of Québec municipalities that regulate the use of pesticides (French) is mandatory. Read the Commercial pesticide application webpage for information about the general rules that apply to the mixing and application of pesticides.
SAgE pesticides provides information on pesticides used for green space and golf course maintenance.
Pesticide application in daycare centres and educational institutions
Only certain lower risk pesticides are authorized for indoor and outdoor daycare and school use. Check the trade names of the pesticides authorized at the specific locations.
Other types of pesticides may be applied for certain specific problems, subject to conditions (PDF 7.91 Mb). No pesticides may be applied during daycare or school hours of activity. The school or daycare management team must be notified in writing at least 24 hours before application. In addition, services or activities cannot resume at the treated location for at least 8 to 12 hours.
The pesticide reduction plan for golf courses
The purpose of pesticide reduction plans for golf courses is to reduce health and environmental risks by reducing the quantities of pesticides applied and selecting the least harmful products based on integrated management.
As such, if you apply pesticides on your golf course (or subcontract their application), you are required to submit an agrologist-signed reduction plan to the Ministère de l’Environnement et de la Lutte contre les changements climatiques (MELCC) at three-year intervals. Information required in these plans is available in the Modèle de plan de réduction des pesticides sur les terrains de golf (DOCX 686 Kb) (French).
Pesticide reduction plans must be forwarded to your regional MELCC office by April 3 of the year that follows the last season considered in the three-year plan. For example, the plan for the 2021, 2022 and 2023 seasons is due before April 3, 2024.
The Bilan des plans de réduction des pesticides sur les terrains de golf au Québec (PDF 2.65 Mb) (French) is prepared on the basis of information received in the reduction plans.
Rationalizing pesticide use
Easy and cost free information about the risks associated with the use of approved pesticides in Québec is available from SAgE Pesticides (French), which provides a pesticide register (French) model for keeping a register of all pesticides used by the business.
Exposure to pesticides
If you have been exposed to pesticides and do not feel well, call the Poison Control Centre immediately at 1 800 463-5060 and follow instructions. If you are seriously ill, go to the emergency room of a hospital and bring the pesticide container label information with you or note the name and registration number of the product to show the triage nurse.
Last update: May 25, 2023