Pesticide Private Applicator Certification (PA)

3/11/2021, E-License, a new online licensing service is live and accepting applications for Private Applicators. If you already have a Connecticut pesticide certification please contact us by email for your login information. If you do not have an account follow the instructions on the page below, please read carefully.

In Connecticut, a farmer must be certified as a private applicator in order to purchase and use restricted use pesticides on agricultural crops.  (No certification is needed if a farmer does not use restricted use pesticides.) Only one certificate per farm is needed.

General Information

The pesticide private applicator certification program is open to persons who intend to use or supervise the use of restricted use pesticides on property owned or rented by them or their employer for the purpose of producing an agricultural commodity. Federal regulations (40 CFR 171) prevent the State of Connecticut from certifying homeowners or home gardeners as private applicators.

Requirements for Certification

  • Be at least 18 years old.
  • Pass written exam.

Registering for Examination

As a minimum requirement for certification, a private applicator must show that they possess a practical knowledge of laws pertaining to pesticide applications and the pest problems associated with their farming operation.  This practical knowledge includes ability to recognize common pests and damage caused by them.  Recognition is critical because it is the first step in control. The private applicator must be able to recognize the pest problem before they select among the available pesticides.

Study Materials

The examination is based on the following publications:

The Cornell Store - Cornell University

Cornell Core Manual*Click to order book

National Core Manual (PDF)

and all of the following:

Note: Due to changes in 40CFR, there are no longer categories for Private Applicator Certifications, thus there is no longer a need for commodity booklets.  If you are doing fumigation with your Private Applicator Certification you must obtain an additional endorsement.

  • Soil Fumigation
  • Non-Soil Fumigation 

Additional Information

Certification Requirements

Any person who uses restricted use pesticides must be certified in order to be able to purchase such products.  With the exception of commercial applications, certification is not required if only general use pesticides are used.

Any person who sprays another's property in exchange for money must possess a commercial applicator's license.  However, individuals that are certified as a private applicator can spray another's property in exchange for services  (i.e. applicator might trade a spray job in the spring for help with harvest in the fall).

A farmer wishing to use restricted use pesticides must obtain a "private applicator's certificate."  The private applicator may then buy and apply restricted use pesticides on their own farm, property they rent or on the farms of others, provided that they do not get paid to do so.

It is not necessary for the certified private applicator to actually perform all pesticide applications.  An employee or family member can apply pesticides, however, the certificate holder is responsible for training the person who actually does the work, and must be available if needed.

Private applicators are required to maintain records with respect to each use of restricted use pesticide and must file a report of their usage with the DEEP on or before January 31st each year for the previous year's applications.

In accordance with state regulation 22a-66-5(e), if your address changes, you must notify the Pesticide Management Program within 30 days.


Private Applicator Renewal

The private applicator certificate must be renewed prior to the expiration date that appears on the certificate. Renewal information will be E-mailed to private applicators prior to the expiration of the certificate. 


Annual Pesticide Use Summary Reports

Private pesticide applicators are required to maintain records with respect to each use of restricted use pesticides. This requirement includes submitting an annual Private Applicator Restricted Use Pesticide Summary Report.  This report must be submitted through the online portal.

DEEP may refuse to renew certification of an applicator for failure to submit this report.

For further information, please contact the Pesticide Management Program by phone at (860) 424-3369 or or write to:

Department of Energy and Environmental Protection
Bureau of Materials Management and Compliance Assurance
Pesticide Management Program
79 Elm Street
Hartford, CT 06106-5127

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Content Last Updated on November 17, 2022