Gardening with Stress Handled Wooden

Gardening with Pressure Treated Wood

Now could be the time for a lot of gardeners to assemble, restore or substitute raised beds to get a bounce on spring planting. It additionally provides us an amazing alternative to organize the soil inside for subsequent yr’s rising season. However do you know that the lumber you select can truly harm you?

Stress handled wooden is created by forcing chemical preservatives into the wooden cells. These preservatives- creosote, pentachlorophenol and chromated copper arsenate salts – assist make the wooden proof against decay by curbing fungus and bug assaults.

Though that is very interesting for raised mattress development, these chemical substances leach into the soil and finally into the crops.

There’s an ongoing argument {that a} sure degree of chromium have to be within the soil earlier than a plant can take up these toxins. This is able to work the identical method calcium and magnesium want one another in correct steadiness for a plant to soak up sure vitamins. However be mindful, though these chemical substances stay within the prime few inches of soil, that’s the space the place our crops take up most of their vitamins.

Stress handled wooden typically takes on a greenish tint as a result of copper residue. Lumber that’s handled must be marked, however ask your seller to make sure of what you’re shopping for.

Additionally, keep away from outdated railroad ties and utility poles which are typically coated in creosote. If you wish to get rid of this stuff, take them to a hazardous waste disposal website. This observe additionally applies to any pressure-treated lumber. Burning it releases toxins into the air, which, might make you sick or worse if inhaled.

Constructing constructions reminiscent of walkways or piers round ponds with strain handled lumber generally is a hazard for fish. Copper residue will kill fish. It’s wiser to make use of a naturally resistant wooden like cedar to make your raised beds and window containers. You may also use stone, brick or cement block, however these can add lime, so verify your ph typically. So benefit from the advantages of raised beds and save the strain handled wooden for house development.

Cindy Kerschner teaches composting for Penn State and the DEP via the Grasp Gardeners program. For extra ideas, join her newsletters at  Backyard With Grammy Ok

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