Keeping trees, shrubs, lawns, and crops growing pest-free produces better food crop yields and more beautiful, functional landscapes. Vegetation pesticide handlers mix and apply the chemicals used to prevent or destroy fungi, insects, and predatory plants. Handlers apply chemicals using a variety of methods such as sprays, vapor, or direct mixing into soil. While scientists continue to improve materials and methods for safety and effectiveness, pesticide handlers take precautions in dealing with potential hazardous materials. Pesticide handlers have specialized training to use the correct amount of pesticides to avoid affecting the plants and animals in the treatment area. These workers spend much of their time outdoors, exposed to the weather and contaminants that require they wear safety gear and protective clothing. Work schedules may be long, at times more than 40 hours a week. A high school diploma or equivalent is the typical job requirement, although technical certificates and specialized training may be required to qualify for some positions.
What they do:
Mix or apply pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, or insecticides through sprays, dusts, vapors, soil incorporation, or chemical application on trees, shrubs, lawns, or crops. Usually requires specific training and state or federal certification.
On the job, you would:
Mix pesticides, herbicides, or fungicides for application to trees, shrubs, lawns, or botanical crops.
Fill sprayer tanks with water and chemicals, according to formulas.
Lift, push, and swing nozzles, hoses, and tubes to direct spray over designated areas.
Math and Science
arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics
Manufactured or Agricultural Goods
manufacture and distribution of products
Arts and Humanities
listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions
talking to others
noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it
Hand and Finger Use
keep your arm or hand steady
hold or move items with your hands
listen and understand what people say
communicate by speaking
People interested in this work like activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions.
They do well at jobs that need:
Attention to Detail
You might use software like this on the job:
Analytical or scientific software
Rate calculation software
Unit conversion software
Office suite software
Microsoft Office software
high school diploma/GED or certificate after high school usually needed