GA Department of Agriculture explains new legal residency requirement for pesticide licenses

During the last state legislative session, a house bill was passed that required all state agencies that issue licenses to verify the legal residence of the applicant. All state agencies had to comply. The following explains the process required for verifying your legal residency when applying for a pesticide license renewal with the Georgia Department of Agriculture.

The following link contains the S&V (Secure & Verifiable) affidavit that you must submit when you renew your GA Dept of Ag Commercial Pesticide License

•  Go to the documents column on the right side of the page.

•  Click on the Affidavit link at the bottom of the column.

•  Complete the form and have it notarized. Include a copy of

    the applicant’s ID.

•  Mail, fax, or e-mail the form to the Licensing Division.

This document must accompany all new private and commercial pesticide licenses as well as renewals. It is important to understand that you will only have to complete this process once. The Affidavit will be kept on file with the GDA Licensing Program.

The website also has a tutorial to lead you through the online license renewal process.

Without the Secure and Verifiable Affidavit, new licenses and license renewals cannot be processed. If you have any questions call the Licensing Division (855) 424-4367. If the Department of Agriculture can provide additional information, please let us know.

Reminder to businesses offering mosquito control services

 If a business offers mosquito control services for a fee, then they will need at least one person to have a Category 41 (mosquito control) license. Other license categories (24 – Ornamentals & Turf, 21 – General Agriculture, etc.) are not sufficient for companies that offer mosquito control services.

For more information on obtaining a Mosquito Control license visit:

Info on the GA Dept of Ag pesticide division.

Online video helps prepare applicators to take the mosquito control applicators exam.

Information on the Georgia Dept of Agriculture Pesticide Division (800) 282-5852

Compiled July 23, 2013GDAg

Where can I order training manuals to study to take the commercial pesticide applicator exam (mosquito control, ornamentals and turf, etc.)?

If you do not already have a commercial license, you will need to take two exams – the General Standards exam and the exam specific for your field (Mosquito Control, Ornamentals & Turf, Right of Way, etc.) Find information on ordering the manuals for the general standards exam and the category exams here.

How can I register to take a commercial pesticide applicator exam?

Visit the Applicator Testing website. You will need to create an account to enter the system. The exams are given at Technical Colleges across the state.

I have a license in one category from the Pesticide Division and want a license in a second category. Do I have to take the General Standards exam again?

No, you just need to take the test for that exam. Order the manual for that category, study the manual and then register for and take the exam that is specific for that category.

Where can I find pesticide applicator recertification classes?

Visit this website. Also contact your local Extension Agent for classes. 

Where can I find information on my commercial applicator’s license (hours needed, etc), recertification classes available, etc.?

Visit this website


The Georgia Department of Agriculture now has a Licensing Division. There are 7 coordinators with a call center to help assist with online renewals. The coordinators are being crossed trained so that everyone is familiar with the basic licensing process for each license. Contact the Licensing Division if you have questions – 404-586-1411 or toll free 855-424-5423 or email

For regulatory questions continue to contact the respective division.


Sandy Shell is one of the Licensing Coordinators for the Georgia Department of Agriculture. She recommends the Kelly Solutions website.

The following can be accessed through this website:

  • Verify credit hours for Commercial Pesticide Applicator and Structural Pest licenses
  • Find recertification courses for private and commercial licenses
  • Renew Commercial and Pesticide Contractor Licenses (Structural renewals coming very soon)
  • Apply for a new Pesticide Contractor License
  • Apply for a new RUP Dealer license
  • Secure & Verifiable documents (coming very soon)

Does Georgia have reciprocal pesticide applicator license agreements with other states?

Georgia does reciprocate with other states on certain categories. Anyone needing more information on this can call Ag Inputs – Pesticide Section at (404) 656-4958.

Turfgrass Disease Update – Gray Leaf Spot and Rust

Rust on zoysia

Alfredo Martinez, Extension Plant Pathologist

Time to scout for gray leaf spot

Gray leaf spot is a fungus disease that affects St. Augustinegrass, perennial ryegrass and tall fescue in Georgia. Hot humid summer weather and high nitrogen levels can make turf susceptible to this disease. The fungus causing the disease is Pyricularia grisea.

Read more

Lespedeza Identification and Control in Turfgrass

Lespedeza McCullough

Edited from a publication by Patrick McCullough, UGA Extension Weed Specialist

See the entire publication here

Common lespedeza (Kummerowia striata (Thunb.) Schind syn. Lespedeza striata) is a freely-branched summer annual legume that is a problem weed in lawns and other turf areas. Common lespedeza, also known as Japanese clover or annual lespedeza, has three smooth, oblong leaflets with parallel veins that are nearly perpendicular to the midvein

As common lespedeza matures, the stems harden and become woody, which is attributed to persistence and competition with turfgrasses in late summer

Flowers are pink to purple and present in the leaf axils. Other lespedeza species may also be found as weeds in turf but common lespedeza is the primary species in Georgia.

This publication gives information on

To see the entire publication click here.

Find other UGA publications here

Photo credit – Common lespedeza in a centipedegrass lawn. Photo by P. McCullough.

Cool Season Turfgrass Disease Update

Alfredo Martinez, UGA Extension Plant Pathologist

It is time to scout for Brown patch (caused by Rhizoctonia solani) and Pythium blight (caused by Pythium spp). These diseases are often the most serious diseases on cool season grasses, especially on tall fescue and ryegrass                      

Brown patch can cause a foliar blight, which results in necrotic leaves and circular brown patches up to 4-5 ft. in diameter. High soil and leaf canopy humidity, and high temperatures increase disease severity. Higher than recommended rates of nitrogen in the spring promotes disease.

Management options include:

  • Avoid nitrogen application when the disease is active
  • Avoid infrequent irrigation and allow the foliage to dry
  • Mow when grass is dry
  • Ensure proper soil pH
  • Thatch reduction and
  • Improve soil drainage.

Pythium MartinezPythium blight has the potential to quickly cause significant damage to turfgrass. The disease starts as small spots, which initially appear dark and water-soaked. Affected turfgrass dies rapidly, collapses, and appears oily and matted. White, cottony mycelia may be evident early in the morning. The disease is driven by hot-wet weather, which correlates with an increased stress on the turf. Similar environmental and cultural factors that encourage brown patch also promote Pythium. Therefore, cultural practices for control of brown patch will also help to minimize Pythium blight development. A correct diagnosis is important because Pythium control requires specific fungicides.

Several fungicides are available for each of the diseases described above. Consult the Georgia Pest Management Handbook or the Turfgrass Pest Control Recommendations for Professionals for proper fungicide selection and usage. Read the label and follow proper guidelines.

For more information on these diseases visit:

For Brown Patch

For Pythium blight