When faced with plant injury that is not as a result of an obvious natural cause, such as freeze or hail, certain steps need to be taken by you, whether the injury is to fruit bearing plants, crops, or pastureland.
- For each growing season, maintain legible copies of purchases of all chemicals.
- Retain purchase records of chemicals for at least three years – five would be better.
- Maintain brochures, articles, bulletins, or anything else you have received in writing which discusses chemicals applied by you to your plants.
- Maintain any correspondence received by you relative to any chemical used from any retailer, consultant or county agent.
- Maintain at least one clean copy of the label on any product purchased which is attached to the box, bag, or plastic jug.
- Actually read the label instructions each year when applying products to see whether or not mixing instructions have been changed.
- Maintain adequate spray records, designating the applicator, crop, and pesticides used, as well as any other instructions given to you or your employees in any certified applicator course.
- Avoid, if at all possible, spraying herbicides from tanks which will be subsequently used for the application of fungicides, insecticides or miticides. (Even if you carefully wash out the tank, this fact will be used against you.)
- Maintain yearly records of acreage planted, by variety, and record yield from crops produced, be it in pounds solid, bins, or boxes.
- Maintain purchase records of seeds, plants, replants, or any other information that will in your opinion help establish yields in years prior to plant injury.
- Maintain records reflecting cost of harvesting, picking, hauling, packing, and any commissions, if applicable to your plants.
- Maintain records relating to soil tests, water tests, pH, or any other testing for disease or insects during any given plant year.
- If you employ a grove service, scout or any other commercial applicator, maintain any invoices received and require they inform you of the chemicals and fertilizers used, and whether they are being applied within the limits recommended by the manufacturer’s label.