Where can I purchase Snipper for Sweet Gum tree seed balls on the internet?
Turman from Broaddus, TX
You'll need to contact a local arborist or your county extension agency to verify this, but I'm fairly certain that Snipper® is regulated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. This means that it can only be sold to and used by commercial arborists (or other professionals) licensed to apply restricted pesticides. The active ingredient in Snipper® is indole-3-butyric. Snipper® is manufactured by a company called Florida Silvics, Inc. Here is a toll-free number for contacting them: 1-800-622-2831. Another company, Tree Tech, sells a microinjection unit designed specifically for use with this product. Their website contains some information on Snipper® that you may find useful, as well as contact information if you have further questions. (http://www.treetech.net/snipper.htm). Laws on pesticide use can vary somewhat from state to state, so I urge you to contact the Texas Department of Agriculture for specific regulations regarding use in your area. http://www.agr.state.tx.us/agr/index/0,1911,1848_5539_5837_0,00.html
There is another commercial product called Floral Brand Fruit Eliminator® that acts as a defruiting agent to control sweet gum balls. It is sprayed on, which makes me wonder if it would be more economical for arborists (and therefore you) to apply. Its active ingredient is ethephon, another chemical that I believe may be regulated. Both of these products require precise timing to be effective. Not all arborists have the equipment or expertise to apply these products, so you may have to do some searching. If you ever lose your Sweet Gum Tree, there are now sterile cultivars available as replacements (e.g. Rotundiloba).
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I hate to ask it but, what in the world is a sweet gum tree? What does it look like? as I've never heard of it? Has anyone else?
I know what a sweet gum tree is (they grow like kudzu around here).....thought at first that you were talking about a kind of implement to actually cut the little boogers off of the tree. That would sure take a long time! :) Then I googled it and found this page: http://gear.sherrilltree.com/iwwidb.pvx?;multi_item_submit (scroll down to the middle of the page). Think that you have to be a professional arborist/plant professional to buy it, i.e., have a license, and the product is illegal to use in California. Good luck with your quest....sweet gum balls can be pretty lethal weapons if you step on them!