Private Pesticide Applicator

Private applicators are people who apply restricted-use pesticides to their own or their employer's agricultural crops. In addition to farm crops, this includes Christmas trees, forests, and nursery and greenhouse plants. 

Private applicators must be certified, but do not need a license. 

Steps to certification

  • Buy a training manual at your county University of Wisconsin-Extension office
  • Schedule an exam time with your county UW-EX office
  • Pass an open-book exam 

Certification is valid for 5 years. There are 6 categories for certification. You may be certified in more than one category.​​​

​ ​​Pr​ivate Certif​ication Categories​


General Farming


Greenhouse & Nursery


Fruit Crop


Fumigation by Private Applicator




Aerial Application​​

Applying pesticides in Indian country:

In addition to state certification and licensing, you need federal certification from the U.S. Environmental Proection Agency to apply restricted-use pesticides in "Indian country," defined as reservations and property owned by tribes.  After receiving certification in a Wisconsin category, you must apply to the EPA for certification, which will be based on the Wisconsin category.​ 

EPA information and application form for Indian country certification​

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