Pesticide Truths | MisInformed? |Tom Wheeler Protector of Mark Cullen| Muskoka Tree Services |

What exactly is a Pesticide Truth?

Simcoe Muskoka Tree Services Inc · 126 like this <- Impressive 

May 4, 2013 at 6:14am ·

Below is information submitted to us by a friend and customer. Keep in mind it is Canadian focused information.

There is a website called “Pesticide Truths” which has some good information, but some of it is somewhat biased.

Often times it will attack the Ontario Cosmetic Pesticide Ban, and sometimes for good reason. The ban was as much a political creation as a scientific one, perhaps more political than scientific in fact.

On the other hand, there is often information on the site which is too one sided, and consequently is off target when trying to present the “truth”.

A recent article on their, which spoke to a Mark Cullen publication is one example.

The title is : Mark Cullen | Continues MisInformation Campaign – Time has really run out for Mark Cullen and his Anti Pesticide Rhetoric.

But what exactly is a Pesticide Truth? Is Mark biased toward the anti-pesticide position? You know what, I do not know nor do I care. What is important is the truth. Ranting for or against a side does not help the public.

If we need Pesticide truths, we need the whole story on both sides, and not simply a part of it.

This article continues to speak positivily towards Merit with an active ingredient of Imidacloprid. It further states that Merit costs considerbly less than does the alternative it speaks to, known as TreeAzin.

Fact – Merit soil drench costs less – however there is more to be learned on that which I will mention below. When mentioning soil drench – I reference the professional pesticide versus 75WP unless indicated.

Fact – Merit injectable is available in Ontario. Sold by Bayer Chemicals under brand name Confidor 200 SL.

Fact – Confidor 200 SL costs aproximatly the same (perhaps slightly more) than does TreeAzin.

Fact – Confidor 200 SL as per Bayer label must be applied annualy, TreeAzin is applied as per label every two years.

1 app per year treeazin
Correction: TreeAzin – It Says, No More Than 1 App per Year recommended

Correction: TreeAzin Being Applied every year according to David Barkely, Manager of Forestry Services Ottawa.

July 2013- Instead of injections every two years, the city’s moved back to applying the chemicals annually, because many trees it treated have died anyway

Fact – as per recent study systemic neonicotinoid insecticides, imidacloprid and clothianidin, cause cognitive damage in bees. They have been recently banned in Europe for two years.

These same insecticides are under review in the U.S.

And in Canada

Correction:  Great Facts here Tom.  Beyond Pesticides and the EU Temporary Ban.  Save the bees….  PMRA has strengthened Label Usage on some of these products and has come out with a best management document.



While Bayer shows their product available in Quebec, the professional soil drench I have not seen as being available, nor have I seen any Canadian PMRA number for it anywhere yet. Discussion with Bayer indicate it will not likely be registered in Canada.

The homeowner version or Merit 75WP appears to be available in Quebec.
Webinars on the EAB with industry experts in the U.S. indicate this is a fairly effective product against EAB when used on smaller DBH trees. .


Merit as Soil Drench for GreenHouse and Nursery PCP# 25636 Merit 60WP

Now to TreeAzin, which some might question as to if it is effective.’s-battle-against-the-emerald-ash-borer&Itemid=461

Correction:  Costs are Between $250 and $400 a year.

2009 – We've been using TreeAzin for two years and we've injected 400 to 450 trees and we've seen very positive results," said David Barkely, the manager for forestry services in Ottawa, adding that the city spends between $75,000 and $100,000 yearly on TreeAzin treatment and that council has recently increased its budget.

The cost of TreeAzin can be extremely limiting, said Barkely. It can set back the city between $250 and $400 per injection.

One injection eradicates and inoculates an ash tree against infection for up to two years.

Correction:  TreeAzin Is not Working and they are treating Yearly, according to David Barkely in 2013.

July 2013 – The city’s finding that the pesticide it’s injected into some ashes it considers especially important (because they’re especially large and beautiful or because a whole stand of threatened ash trees provides shade for a playground, for instance) isn’t working. Instead of injections every two years, the city’s moved back to applying the chemicals annually, because many trees it treated have died anyway. Even half a dozen ashes shading the playground of City Hall’s daycare are dead or dying, despite the telltale metal tags hammered into their trunks showing they’ve been treated.

“We don’t know if it’s condition, where the tree is growing, the population,” Barkley says.

  • If you decide to treat your tree with TreeAzin, then do so immediately.
  • Next year, have your tree re-assessed by an arborist and if the tree has not deteriorated significantly, we suggest that you re-treat your tree in 2014. This process should be repeated in 2015 to help insure your tree’s survival. It may be possible to switch to biennial treatments if the tree is doing well.

We will continue to evaluate our EAB treatment strategies and keep you posted.

Joe Meating, President BioForest Technologies – July 2013


Merit soil drench – as per label conference at American University in February 2013 is really effective on smaller DBH trees, with testing is still ongoing on larger trees.

The other aspect which is a potential issue on both soil drench and bark spray are:
• Off target exposure – contact with pets, flowers, vegetables, birds or other insects which were not the intended target.
• Leaching of chemicals – especially into groundwater

Note when you look at American sites, you will rarely find TreeAzin listed as it has only been used / registered in the U.S. recently compared to many other products.

There is also a comparison between protecting an ash tree versus removal and replacement, with no discussion on the actual benefit of a mature tree. A lot has been learned over the past decade on tree benefits to the urban landscape, and how much a mature tree really is worth and what the impacts of loss might be.

These range far beyond the actual replacement cost of the tree itself.
You will also see bark spray mentioned in American articles, this is not available nor legal for use in Canada.

Note: the lack of Merit soil drench or bark spray is not related to the Cosmetic Pesticide Ban in place in the Province of Ontario.


The Topic of the original post was about Mark Cullen Misinformation and his Anti Pesticide money making schemes.

Speculations dangers about ground water and pets is just that. (FearMongering to create a market for TreeAzin)

Repeat FYI: Merit as Soil Drench for GreenHouse and Nursery IN ONTARIO (Available to be abused off label at your own peril.  Just ask a local farmer, we are told) PCP# 25636



There was also a mention that TreeAzin is Neem Oil, this is not correct.

Some American references – note as American TreeAzin will be not mentioned, and there will be pesticides which we can not get legally in Canada.

In recent years, the EAB has demonstrated time and time again what has now become known as the Death Curve. And it is a fact on how quickly the death of trees accelerate. Ash trees not treated will die.

While this is shown to be pesticide truths – often times only part of the story is told and very little reference to any external research is provided or discussed/reviewed.

Further to this a cost from an article by Mark Cullen, and somehow highlighting it to make it sound wrong. Over the life of the treatment, perhaps eight or ten years, Mark stated a price of $800-1200. That works out to perhaps $100 per year, is that not unreasonable to have a professional protect your largest landscape investment? We often times pay more than that on ineffective weed control! Yes the product is expensive, too much so in my opinion, but so is Confidor and any other chemical or medication we buy. Of course the manufacturers are paying for their R&D and Canadian pesticide registration costs (which can be high).

Correction: Mark Cullen indicated Derivative of NEEM.  Whats your Point??  He also Points out an illegal way to use Pesticides after it (Neem) has been removed from store shelves.  A*s Kisser.

How effective is the treatment for EAB (TreeAzin)? Unlike Dutch elm disease, which killed virtually all of the American elm trees that lined our streets in the 1960s and early ’70s, the EAB can be controlled using TreeAzin, a “biologically based” liquid that is injected into the tree by licensed professionals. TreeAzin is a derivative of the neem tree, a native of southeast Asia. Neem is popular as a plant shine and used for control of the lily beetle on oriental lilies.


If we are to get “truths” and we need and want them, then please include the whole truth and not simply parts of it to push a specific agenda.
Sent to us by Tom Wheeler.

Tom thank you for your Opinion Piece 

As a gift to you a short video has been attached,  

Uncle Adolph.

Bayer Merit for Tree Costs

Original Post :