Herself's Houston Garden

Conservation through cultivation

Insecticides




I’m reading Silent Spring, while I’m only a few chapters into her book I realized how little I knew about the current crop of pesticides. I rarely use them so I guess it just slipped by. I dug through all my gardening books and while they recommend certain pesticides for certain problems they talk very little about the mechanisms behind the chemicals.

Most if not all the insecticides in use are neurotoxins. They inhibit the creation of a neurotransmitter, or they prevent it’s uptake so an overdose of the neurotransmitter takes place. Neurotransmitters are the substances that allow your brain and nervous system to function and communicate.

How insecticides work
Neurotoxin that works on sodium and potassium ions
(Sodium, chlorine and potassium effect the release and uptake of neurotransmitters)
[Organochloride: Diphenyl Aliphatics]
[Organochloride: Hexchloracyclohexane]
[Organochloride: Polychloroterpenes]
Pyrethroids
Pyrethrum
Limonene

Neurotoxin that works on GABA ( g-aminobutyric  acid)
(GABA is an inhibitory neurotransmitter/amino acid )
[Organochloride: Cyclodienes]
Fiproles
Antibiotics

Neurotoxin that works on ACh ( acetylcholine)
(ACh is a neurotransmitter needed for controlling muscles )
Organophosphates
Nicontinoids, Nicotine
Spinosads

Neurotoxin that works on glutamic acid
(Glutamic Acid is important for learning, may cause seizures )
Carbamates

Neurotoxin that works on norepinephrine and serotonin
(Norepinephrine focuses attention, changes blood pressure, Serotonin affects appetite, anger )
Formamidines

Neurotoxin that works on ATP ( adenosine triphosphate )
( ATP helps to transport energy between cells )
Dinitrophenols
Organotins
Pyrroles
Pyrazoles
Pyridazinones
Quinazolines

Neurotoxin that attacks mitochondria in neurons
Rotenone

Prevents chitin needed to create exoskeleton
Benzoylureas

Disrupts molting by blocking ecdysone
Neem

Narcotics
Fumigants

???
Organosulfurs

Insecticide Classes and names sold as
Organochlorines:
Insecticides that contain carbon, hydrogen and chlorine, often persist a long time in the environment

Diphenyl Aliphatics [ DDT, DDD, dicofol, ethylan, chlorobenzilate, methoxychlor]

Hexchlorocyclohexane ( HCH/BHC, lindane )

Cyclodiences [aldrin, dieldrin, heptachlor, endrin, mirex, endosulfan, chlordecone ( Kepone)]

Polychloroterpenes [ toxaphene, strobane ]

Organophosphates
Insecticides containing phosphorus acids

Aliphatics [Malathion, trichlorfon (Dylox), monocrotophos (Azodrin), dimethoate (Cygon), oxydemetonmethyl ( Meta Systox), dicrotophos (Bidrin), disultoton (Di-Syston), dichlorvos (Vapana), mevinphos (Phosdrin), methamidophos (Monitor), acephate( Orthene)]

Phenyl derivatives [ parathion(ethyl parathion), profenofos (Curacron), sulprofos ( Bolstar), isofenphos( Oftanol, Pryfon), fenitrothion( Sumithion), fenthion( Dasanit), famphur ( Cyflee, Warbex)]

Heterocyclic derivatives [diazinon, azinphos-methyl (Guthion), azinphos-ethyl (Acifon, Gusathion), chlorpyrifos (Dursban, Lorsban, Lock-On), methidathion (Supracide), phosmet (Imidan), isazophos (Brace, Triumph),  chlorpyrifos-methyl (Reldan)]

Organosulfurs
Includes: garlic, penicillin
[etradifon (Tedion), propargite (Omite, Comite), ovex (Ovotran)]

Carbamates
[Sevin, methomyl (Lannate), carbofuran (Furadan), aldicarb (Temik), oxamyl (Vydate), thiodicarb (Larvin), methiocarb (Mesurol), propoxur (Baygon), bendiocarb (Ficam), carbosulfan (Advantage), aldoxycarb (Standak), promecarb (Carbamult), and fenoxycarb (Logic, Torus),primicarb, indoxacarb alanycarb and furathiocarb ]

Formamidines
[chlordimeform (Galecron, Fundal),  formetanate (Carzol), and amitraz (Mitac, Ovasyn)]

Dinitrophenols
[binapacryl (Morocide), dinocap (Karathane)]

Organotins
[cyhexatin (Plictran), Fenbutatin-oxide (Vendex)]

Pyrethroids

[allethrin (Pynamin), tetramethrin (Neo-Pynamin), resmethrin (Synthrin), bioresmethrin, Biollethrin, phono (Sumithrin), fenvalerate (Pydrin, Tribute, Bellmark), permethrin (Ambush, Astro, Dragnet, Flee, Pounce, Prelude, Talcord, Torpedo) bifenthrin (Capture, Talstar), lambda-cyhalothrin (Demand, Karate, Scimitar, Warrior), cypermethrin (Ammo, Barricade, Cymbush, Cynoff, Ripcord), cyfluthrin (Baythroid, Countdown, Cylense, Laser, Tempo), deltamethrin (Decis) esfenvalerate (Asana, Hallmark), fenpropathrin (Danitol), flucythrinate (Cybolt, Payoff), fluvalinate (Mavrik, Spur), prallethrin (Etoc), tau-fluvalinate (Mavrik), tefluthrin (Evict, Fireban, Force, Raze), tralomethrin (Scout X-TRA, Tralex), zeta-cypermethrin (Mustang, Fury), acrinathrin (Rufast), imiprothrin (Pralle), gamma-cyhalothrim (Pytech)]

Nicotinoids
[Admire, Confidor, Gaucho, Merit, Premier, Premise, Provado, Imidacloprid, acetamiprid (Assail), thiamethoxam (Actara, Platinum), nitenpyram (Bestguard), clothianidin (Poncho), dinotefuran (Starke), thiacloprid]

Spinosyns
[(Success, Tracer Naturalyte)]

Fiproles
[Fipronil (Regent, Icon, Frontline)]

Pyrroles
[Chlorfenapyr (Alert, Pirate)]

Pyrazoles
[Tebufenpyrad (Pyranica, Masai), Fenpyroximate (Acaban, Dynamite), ethiprole (Curbex), tolfenpyrad (OMI-88)]

Pyridazines
[Pyridaben (Nexter, Sanmite)]

Quinazolines
[fenazaquin (Matador)]

Benzoylureas
[triflumuron (Alsystin) chlorfluazuron (Atabron), teflubenzuron (Nomolt, Dart), hexaflumuron (Trueno, Consult), flufenoxuron (Cascade), flucycloxuron (Andalin), flurazuron, novaluron, and diafenthiuron, bistrifluron (DBI-3204) and noviflumuron (XDE-007). lufenuron (Axor) hexaflumuron, novaluron, diflubenzuron (Dimilin, Adept, Micromite), cyromazine (Larvadex), Trigard]

Botanicals
[sulfur, tobacco, pyrethrum, derris, hellebore, quassia, camphor, turpentine,limonene, cinnamaldehyde, eugenol, azadirachtin, pyrethrum, nicotine, Rotenone, Limonene or d-Limonene]

Antibiotics
[Clinch, Avid]

Fumigants
methyl bromide is the most heavily used of the fumigants,
[ methyl bromide, ethylene dichloride, hydrogen cyanide, sulfuryl fluoride (Vikane), Vapam, TeloneII, D-D, chlorothene, ethylene oxide,  napthalene crystals and paradichlorobenzene crystals, Phosphine gas (PH3),
1,3-dichloropropane (Telone), iodomethane (Midas) and metam-potassium (Curtin)]

More information:
An Introduction to Insecticides