Public parks and private yards can add to the beauty of urban landscapes, encourage biodiversity and contribute to happy, healthy communities. Well-cared for green spaces in urban centres reduce vandalism, increase property value and boost both physical and mental health for those who visit them.

“There are many, many benefits to green spaces in urban areas,” says Karen Stephenson, director of regulatory affairs and stakeholder relations at Scotts Canada Ltd, a global leader in the lawn care industry. “Healthy green spaces are not only a spot for recreation and social activities in our communities — they also help protect the environment around us.”

Urban green spaces contribute to the local environment by filtering rain water and capturing pollutants in the air. However, they require care to thrive, including protection from pests like insects, weeds and diseases.

Pesticides help protect lawns, fields, and gardens and keep them healthy. Keeping weeds and other pests under control not only protects flowerbeds and lawns, it also diminishes pollens that can agitate allergy symptoms and keeps fields safe for sports.

Whether used for agriculture or urban lawns, pesticides are rigorously tested. Both synthetic and natural pesticides must meet the same high standards of health and environmental safety protection and must be approved by Health Canada.

“Canada has some of the best regulation and legislation related to the evaluation of pesticides,” says Stephenson. “Many regulatory agencies around the world are taking a very close look at pesticide products to ensure that they are safe for use. There’s a lot of science to support the safety of these products.”