This investigation was initiated in 1954 at Beltsville, Maryland, to determine the initial and long-term response of vegetation to, and persistence of, massive quantities of herbicides. Vegetative responses were determined 1, 2, 3, and 15 years after treatment. Residual phytotoxicity and herbicide residues were determined 14 years after treatment with bioassay and chemical analysis. After 3 years, revegetation was nearly complete in plots treated with massive (up to 400 times recommended agricultural rates) quantities of fenuron (1,1-dimethyl-3-phenylurea), monuron [3-(p-chlorophenyl)-1,1-dimethylurea], dalapon (2,2-dichloropropionic acid), chlorpropham (isopropyl m-chlorocarbanilate), sodium chlorate, 2,4-D [(2,4-dichlorophenoxy)acetic acid], borax, sodium chlorate plus borax, and 2,4-D plus borax. Only diuron [3-(3,4-di chlorophenyl)-1,1-dimethylurea], DMU [3-(3,4-dichlorophenyl)-1-methylurea] sodium arsenite, and sodium arsenite plus sodium chlorate gave residual control of vegetation for more than 3 years. Revegetated plots were identical to untreated check plots whether the vegetation was initially killed by chemical or mechanical methods. Phytotoxic soil residues of DMU, diuron, and arsenate were present 14 years after application.