Non-Systemic Pesticide

Last Updated: September 9, 2018

Definition - What does Non-Systemic Pesticide mean?

A non-systemic pesticide is a topical pesticide that can easily be washed off of a plant before consumption. The plant doesn't not absorb or uptake a non-systemic pesticide through its foliage or leaves; it remains only on the exterior of the plant.

Unlike systemic products, non-systemic pesticides can easily be flushed or drained from the plant's root zone prior to harvest, leaving little to no residues behind. This type of pesticide is very often used in hydroponics because they render the plants safe for consumption. Systemic pesticides, on the other hand, have also been known to affect the plant’s pollen, which can have a highly detrimental effect on pollinators.

MaximumYield explains Non-Systemic Pesticide

Non-systemic pesticides are commonly used in home gardens because they are safer than their systemic counterparts. They often fall into the organic pesticide category.

According to botanists, it is still important to wear gloves and other protective wear when working with non-systemic pesticides, as they are still strong substances in most cases that can irritate the skin.

Unlike organic products, systemic pesticide affect the plant from the inside, which may render the plants unsuitable for consumption. As a result, systemic products are commonly applied to flowers, shrubs, and trees while non-systemic products are used on edible plants like string beans, tomatoes, and the likes.

Non-systemic pesticides are easily obtained from the garden center, or made at home. Systemic products, however, are usually only available for use in commercial horticulture and agriculture. Non-systemic pesticides can either be broad-spectrum (killing any and all insects they come in contact with) or selective (targeting just one specific species of pest).

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