In Texas, the Texas Pesticide Law requires you must be licensed or certified by the Texas Department of Agriculture in order to lawfully use a restricted-use pesticide, state-limited-use pesticide or regulated herbicides. To obtain a license, here are some steps in the process.

A private pesticide applicator is someone who uses or supervises the use of restricted-use or state-limited-use pesticides or regulated herbicides to produce an agricultural commodity on the following, on personally owned property; rented property; property owned by his or her employer; property under his or her general control; or the property of another person if applied without compensation, other than the trading of personal services between producers of agricultural commodities.

An agricultural commodity is a plant or animal grown for sale, lease, barter, feed or human consumption and animals raised for farm or ranch work. No license is required to apply general-use pesticides to produce agricultural commodities.

Commercial applicator operates a business or is employed by a business that applies restricted-use or state-limited-use pesticides to the property of another person for hire or compensation.

Noncommercial applicator is required to be licensed, but does not qualify as a commercial applicator.

Noncommercial political subdivision (NCPS) is an applicator employed by a political subdivision of the state of Texas or a federal agency operating in Texas.

As of June 1, the Texas Department of Agriculture has contracted with PSI Services to administer exams for agricultural pesticide applicator licensing. This is the same vendor that administers exams for structural pest control licensing. PSI has been providing credentialing and testing services to state and federal agencies, private sector businesses and professional associations for more than 65 years.

PSI will provide both excellent quality exam opportunities and a convenient schedule for pesticide applicators to test in 22 locations across the state. Tyler is one of those locations. The schedule will provide more testing opportunities than previously.

The next training for private applicators is scheduled Aug. 20 at the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, 1517 W. Front St., room 116, of the Cotton Belt Building. The training begins at 8 a.m., and ends at noon. This training is required for those wanting to take the private applicator exam. Anyone interested in attending this training should contact our office at 903-590-2980 to schedule and to purchase their manuals.

Interested parties will need to visit our office and purchase study materials to include a Private Applicator General manual, the Laws and Regulations manual, and all the handouts needed for the training. A complete set of manuals and worksheets is $40. There is an additional $10 training fee the day of the training. Both are payable with cash or check.

Upon completion of the training, a training verification form as well as an application will be presented to each participant. The participants will complete the application sending it along with the appropriate license fee to the Texas Department of Agriculture. The Texas Department of Agriculture will send a confirmation letter of the received application with an account number. Once this account number is received, the applicant will contact PSI to register and schedule the private applicator exam.


Educational programs of the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service are open to all people without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, genetic information or veteran status. The Texas A&M University System, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the County Commissioners Courts of Texas Cooperating.






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