15.20.10.02

.02 Definitions.

A. In this chapter, the following terms have the meanings indicated.

B. Terms Defined.

(1) “Applicator” means a person who applies any type of nutrient, as defined by this chapter, to any crop, plant, or land intended to be planted.

(2) “Department” means the Maryland Department of Agriculture or its designee.

(3) “Direct supervision” means the act or process whereby a fertilizer application is made by a trained employee acting under the instructions and control of a certified professional fertilizer applicator who:

(a) Is responsible for the actions of that person; and

(b) Maintains immediate contact with the trained employee via radio or mobile phone (voice) communication.

(4) “Enhanced efficiency fertilizer” means a fertilizer product that increases plant uptake and decreases the potential of nutrient loss to the environment, including gaseous loss, leaching, or runoff, when compared to an appropriate reference fertilizer product.

(5) “Fertilizer” or “commercial fertilizer” means a substance containing a recognized plant nutrient used for its plant nutrient content and designed for use, or claimed to have value, in promoting plant growth, except unmanipulated animal and vegetable manure, marl, lime, wood ashes, and gypsum.

(6) “Impervious surface” means any structure, surface, or improvement that reduces or prevents absorption of stormwater into land, and includes concrete, asphalt, porous paving, paver blocks, gravel, crushed stone, decks, patios, elevated structures, and other similar structures, surfaces, or improvements.

(7) “Label” means the display of all written, printed, or graphic matter on the immediate container or a statement accompanying a commercial fertilizer or soil conditioner.

(8) “Land not used for agricultural purposes” means a parcel of land that does not qualify for agricultural use assessment under Tax-Property Article, §8-209, Annotated Code of Maryland.

(9) “Lawn patch product” means a premixed blend of grass seed, fertilizer, and mulch.

(10) “Licensee” means an entity that holds a business license that is issued by the Department, in accordance with this chapter.

(11) “Low phosphorous fertilizer” means fertilizer:

(a) Containing not more than 5 percent of available phosphate (P2O5); and

(b) That has an application rate not to exceed 0.25 pound of available phosphate (P2O5)/1000 square feet/ application and 0.5 pound of available phosphate (P2O5)/1000 square feet/year.

(12) “Management unit” means an area of land similar soil types, having similar use and management history, and having similar fertility levels as determined by valid soil tests, and will be managed the same in the future.

(13) Natural Organic Fertilizer.

(a) “Natural organic fertilizer” means a fertilizer product that is derived from either a plant or animal product containing carbon, and one or more elements, other than hydrogen or oxygen that are essential for plant growth.

(b) “Natural organic fertilizer” does not include a fertilizer product that contains:

(i) Synthetic materials; or

(ii) Materials that are changed in any physical or chemical manner from their initial state, except by physical manipulation, including drying, cooking, chopping, grinding, shredding, or pelleting.

(14) “Non-professional” means any person who applies fertilizer to turf and is not for-hire.

(15) “Nutrient” means a fertilizer or any substance used to promote plant growth.

(16) “Nutrient content" means the percentage of any primary nutrient, as total nitrogen (N), available phosphate (P2O5), or soluble potash (K2O), in any type or source of plant nutrients.

(17) Organic Fertilizer.

(a) “Organic fertilizer” means a fertilizer product that is derived from either a plant or animal product containing carbon and one or more elements, other than hydrogen or oxygen, that are essential for plant growth.

(b) “Organic fertilizer includes a fertilizer product that contains:

(i) Synthetic materials; or

(ii) Materials that are changed in a physical or chemical manner from their initial state.

(18) “Person” means the State, any county, municipal corporation, or other political subdivision of the State, or any of their units, or an individual, receiver, trustee, guardian, executor, administrator, fiduciary, or representative of any kind, or any partnership, firm, association, public or private corporation, or any other entity, unless otherwise provided.

(19) “Professional fertilizer applicator” means any person who:

(a) Is certified to apply fertilizer in accordance with this chapter; and

(b) Applies fertilizer for hire or within the scope of that person’s employment.

(20) “Slow-release nitrogen” means nitrogen in a form that:

(a) Delays it’s availability for plant uptake and use after application; or

(b) Extends its availability to the plant significantly longer than a reference “rapidly available nutrient” such as ammonium nitrate or urea, ammonium phosphate, or potassium chloride.

(21) Soil Conditioner.

(a) “Soil conditioner” means any substance or mixture of substances intended for sale, offered for sale, or sold for:

(i) Manurial, soil enriching, or soil corrective purposes;

(ii) Promoting or stimulating the growth of plants;

(iii) Increasing the productivity of plants;

(iv) Improving the quality of crops; or

(v) Producing any chemical or physical change in the soil, except a commercial fertilizer, unmanipulated animal and vegetable manures, agricultural liming material, and gypsum.

(b) “Soil conditioner” includes but is not limited to materials such as compost, peat, vermiculite, or perlite that are incorporated into the soil.

(22) “Soil test” means a technical analysis of soil conducted by a laboratory using standards recommended by the University of Maryland.

(23) “Trained employee” means a person who applies fertilizer under the direct supervision of a certified professional fertilizer applicator.

(24) “Turf” means land, including residential property and publicly owned land that is planted in grass, except land that is used in the sale and production of sod, as defined in Agriculture Article, §9-101, Annotated Code of Maryland.

(25) “Water-soluble nitrogen” means nitrogen that is readily soluble in water.