Chapter 24

Pesticides for Grapevines

Pesticide Classification

Pesticides are classified in several ways, each having its own value for a given purpose. Some are classified by the Environmental Protection Agency as restricted-use pesticides (RUPís). Pesticides are also classified based on toxicity. One of the most common means to classify a pesticide is based on chemical structure. Based on chemistry, pesticides can be divided into three groups: inorganic pesticides, organic pesticides, and biopesticides.

Inorganic Pesticides

The inorganic pesticides are those pesticides that do not contain carbon. They are among the oldest known pesticides, and they can contain elements or natural compounds, such as boron, copper, and sulfur.

Organic Pesticides

Organic pesticides are compounds used to control pests that contain carbon. Although organic pesticides can occur naturally, they most often are man-made (synthetic). For example, organophosphate pesticides contain phosphorous and carbamate pesticides have a carbonic acid base.


Biopesticides (also known as biological pesticides) are certain types of pesticides derived from such natural materials as animals, plants, microorganisms (bacteria, viruses, fungi, protozoa, etc.), and certain minerals. Biopesticides in general have a narrow target range and a very specific mode of action. They are slow acting, have a relatively critical application times, suppress, rather than eliminate a pest population.

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