University of Illinois Extension

University of Illinois Extension

Hort Answers

Herbicide Injury

Pigment Inhibitor Herbicide Injury

Mesotrione herbicide drift on tomato.
Mesotrione herbicide drift on tomato.

Detrimental affects are more likely to occur on broadleaf plants that are annual or biennial rather than perennial in their life cycle.

The list below of specific plants is NOT all inclusive. It reflects the authors' experience as well as University of Illinois herbicide injury research trial results.

Plants Affected

These herbicides inhibit the production of certain photosynthetic pigments in the plant.

Various: clomazone (Command), isoxaflutole (Balance PRO),mesotrione (Callisto and a component of Lumax and Lexar), and tropamezone (Impact).

Characteristics of activity:

  • Clomazone is volatile.
  • Translocated in xylem (clomazone) and phloem.

Symptoms of Injury:

  • Bleaching or whitening of foliage.
  • Eventual necrosis and plant death possible.

  • Read and follow all label directions.
  • Use caution when applying herbicides around plants as desirable plants may be sensitive and injury may result.
  • Do not spray when wind speed and direction are such that herbicide drift is likely to occur.
  • Affected plants may or may not survive herbicide drift; it depends on both the degree of exposure and the plant's tolerance to the herbicide.
  • Water and fertilize plants as needed to promote good plant health.
  • Illinois residents: If you suspect herbicide injury as a result of off-target movement from a nearby application and you are interested in filing a complaint with the Illinois Department of Agriculture, call the Illinois Department of Agriculture's Bureau of Environmental Programs at 1-800-641-3934. To learn more about spray drift and the formal complaint process, visit the Illinois Pesticide Safety Education Spray Drift Resources website.
  • Non-Illinois residents: If you are interested in filing a complaint, contact your state pesticide control official via the Association of American Pesticide Control Officials website.

Related Resources
Herbicide Residue Testing Labs
U of IL - Distance Diagnosis through Digital Imaging