Del. Weed Killer Blamed for Nationwide Tree Damage

Emily Smolen

Weed killers are a summer staple for landscapers everywhere. But one product from a Delaware company may be responsible for causing more harm than good.

Something is killing pine trees and spruce trees nationwide, and many suspect that Wilmington’s DuPont Co. is the main culprit.

Marsha Shomo of Johnstown, Pa. believes so. Delaware Online reports that Shomo filed a federal lawsuit against DuPont, claiming that the company’s Imprelis herbicide, which is only sold to professional landscapers, caused extensive damage to five of her pine trees. Shomo’s lawsuit accused DuPont of failing to properly test their product and also failing to warn customers.

An Indiana golf course operator as well as a Michigan golf club also sued the company, according to Delaware Online.

Aside from the lawsuits, numerous complaints about the herbicide causing tree damage have popped up across the country.

Both DuPont and The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency are currently investigating. Delaware Online also reports that DuPont has recommended that landscapers not spray Imprelis near spruce and pine trees.

Michael McDermott, the global business leader for DuPont Professional Products also wrote a letter on June 17, claiming that Imprelis might not have been mixed properly or was applied with other herbicides, according to Delaware Online.

The Wolfe Pointe community in Lewes, Delaware is also reportedly experiencing heavy damage to their trees.

Denise Clemons, the president of Wolfe Pointe’s homeowners association told Delaware Online that trees have gone brown in at least two-dozen neighborhood properties.

One couple that lives in Wolfe Pointe believe that Imprelis, used by the landscaper who worked on their property, poisoned 10 of their pine trees.

So the next time you complain about dandelions in your front yard, just remember, it could always be worse.

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