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RE: Chlordane and Soils

  • Subject: RE: [cg] Chlordane and Soils
  • From: "Chris Kirby" ckirby@regionalfoodbank.org
  • Date: Fri, 12 Aug 2005 12:38:37 -0500
  • Content-class: urn:content-classes:message
  • Thread-index: AcWfZK0ADkfCLWW4T0WF04setWhkSg==
  • Thread-topic: [cg] Chlordane and Soils

Hi Katherine,

One of our affiliated community gardens ran into the same problem as you
have and through testing found out that the chlordane levels were too
high for growing.  Allen Parleir, the leader of the garden, did
considerable research on the topic and found a bio remediation
microorganism soil from a company in Arkansas.  They had the mix hauled
in and applied to the lots that were contaminated and also grew rye on
the lots for soil conditioning and I think additional uptake of the
chlordane.  It took several years but the lots are now virtually clear
of chlordane and they are growing on them.  I do not have all of the
facts but will pass this email on to Allen so he can give you the
contact information, who and how he did the soil sampling with and more
specific information on how they did their remediation.  Good luck.

Chris Kirby
Urban Harvest Director
Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma

-----Original Message-----
From: katherine@kccua.org [mailto:katherine@kccua.org] 
Sent: Thursday, August 11, 2005 4:01 PM
To: community_garden@mallorn.com
Subject: [cg] Chlordane and Soils

Hello.  I am new to this list and want to say how glad I am to find you
I am Co-Director of a new organization in Kansas City, the KC Center for
Agriculture, which seeks to promote small scale urban farming.  We are
with a grower who is looking at buying several city lots that had houses
them up until maybe 20 years ago; the houses were torn down and the lots
been empty since then.  She wants to grow organic vegetables on them.

We've had the soil tested for lead and heavy metals (and the tests come
out at
tolerable levels).  We also talked to a local guy with the EPA who
raised the
issue of chlordane being used on the homes for termite control.  We
talked to
a soil remediation person at K-State and he talked to a risk management
at USDA.  Both of them indicated that soil testing for chlordane is very
or miss" and that if we had concerns about its possible presence, we
shouldn't grow root vegetables on the sites.  (I did see some research
indicated that chlordane uptakes nearly as efficiently into leaves and

Have any of you tested for the presence in chlordane in potential urban
community garden sites?  Does anyone have any experience with assessing
risks of this for urban farming/gardening?  If you have tested, could
recommend testing companies and what are the general costs?

We are somewhat perplexed as to where to go with this information and
appreciate your help in sorting it all out!

Katherine Kelly, Co-Director, Kansas City Center for Urban Agriculture

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