2,4-Dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D)
Structure of 2,4-D
2,4-Dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D) is widely used to control weeds in agriculture, recreational areas, lawns and gardens, and along roadsides and railroad tracks.
- 2,4-Dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D) is part of the group of Herbicides. Click here to learn more about this group of chemicals.
2,4-D is found in
- Some home lawn products labeled as weed killers and for “weed and feed” use.
- Commercial weed control products used along roadsides and railroad tracks, and in recreational areas such as golf courses, athletic fields, and parks.
- Some herbicides for crops such as wheat, almonds, and some citrus and stone fruits.
Possible health concerns of 2,4-D
Scientists are still studying how 2,4-D might affect people’s health. There is concern that 2,4-D:
- May interfere with the body’s natural hormones.
- May harm the developing fetus.
- May increase cancer risk.
Possible ways to reduce exposure to 2,4-D
- Use non-chemical methods to control weeds, such as regular mowing and hand-weeding.
- If you choose to use a weed killer, spot-treat problem areas and follow warning statements on the label. After application:
- Remove shoes before entering your house; remove clothes that are soiled during application and launder them separately.
- Limit access to 2,4-D treated areas, at least until the product has completely dried; for children and pets, limit access for one to two days or longer if possible.
- Look for posted notices that indicate an area (such as a park or athletic field) has been treated with a weed killer and follow any precautions on the notice.