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Re: Fwd: Wood to be used in a community garden. Go to the Archives

  • Subject: Re: Fwd: [cg] Wood to be used in a community garden. Go to the Archives
  • From: Ann Pearce Ann.Pearce@uvm.edu
  • Date: Tue, 22 Apr 2003 16:48:30 -0400

Dear Adam, and Skyler, and All,

I've been researching the issue of pressure treated wood to prepare a factsheet 
for the Vermont Master Gardener Helpline. We are anticipating increased calls 
on the issue this season due to the upcoming ban by the EPA of pressure treated 
wood for residential uses. This ban is effective December 31, 2003, though I 
read that it can remain in the lumber yards after that date until it is sold 

The ban is in response to mounting evidence that arsenic does indeed leach from 
the wood over time, contaminating soil and potentially increasing cancer risks 
for those who come in contact with it, especially children. I have found 
conflicting research so far for the amount of arsenic taken up by vegetables.

Below are some links with information about the ban, as well as some current 

EPA Factsheets

Article from Penn State: Garden Use of Treated Lumber


the other side:   

I hope this helps in your decision making! 


Ann Pearce
a community gardener in Burlington, VT

Quoting Adam36055@aol.com:

> In a message dated 4/22/03 3:40:08 PM Eastern Daylight Time, Adam36055
> writes:
> << ubj: Re: [cg] Wood to be used in a community garden. Go to the Archives
>  Date:  4/22/03 3:40:08 PM Eastern Daylight Time
>  From:  Adam36055
>  To:    skylery@shfoodbank.org
>  Skyler,
>  Please go to the archives of this listserve at community_garden@mallorn.com.
> One you get there, please go to the "Mailing lists" section, 
> (http://www.hort.net/lists/)  you will fine a button for community garden 
> (http://www.hort.net/lists/community_garden/). 
>  Once there, you can go back several years in our rather heated discussions 
> on treated and untreated wood in gardens.  Most of the sensible heads on this
> listserv are anti treated wood in gardens, but there is one fine gardener who
> says that the arsenic run off is minimal, according to her scientist...
>  The exchanges go on and on, but read them. 
>  My suggestion - Why not use rocks or stone instead?   The stuff is far more
> attractive and doesn't rot.  Also brick beds last forever too...
>  Have a nice day,
>  Adam Honigman
>  Volunteer, 
>   <A HREF="http://www.clintoncommunitygarden.org/";>Clinton Community Garden
> </A> 
>  << Subj:    [cg] Wood to be used in a community garden.
>   Date: 4/22/03 2:44:19 PM Eastern Daylight Time
>   From: skylery@shfoodbank.org (Skyler York)
>   Sender:   community_garden-admin@mallorn.com
>   To:   community_garden@mallorn.com
>   What wood is suggested to be used in a Community Garden? Some have said
>   use untreated wood, but the replacement of this wood after it decays
>   would be costly. Others say use treated wood to last longer, but the
>   issue of CCA comes to mind when dealing with treated would. 
>   Any suggestions?  I think the argument could go either way.
>    >>
>   >>


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