Can you use pressure treated wood for raised garden bed,free woodworking plans dry sink table,make table smaller in latex - PDF 2016

09.02.2016
Otherwise there are decorative stone, concrete blocks, old railroad ties, landscape timbers, bricks, the newish composite woods like Tyvek, plastics, redwood, cedar, etc. But another aspect of it is, how does it blend into the environment and what your preferences are. I design my beds to be exactly 4 feet wide on the outside so that I can use 4 foot wide rolls of hardware cloth. In my climate, with dry summers, I expect the fir to last around 5 years, but I don't yet have 5 years of experience with them yet, so we shall see.
The truth is arsenic is everywhere, it naturally occurs in soil and water and we eat small amounts of it everyday. All told, by looking at the science, I do not think anyone needs to worry about growing vegetables in CCA lumber beds. Arsenic is no longer used in pressure treated lumber in the US and was outlawed several years ago. ACQ contains no arsenic – only copper and quaternary ammonium compound and has been around now for several years.
MCQ is a newer treatment that is treated with particles instead of liquid and is supposed to be even more stable than ACQ. Second, is there some simple, soil testing mechanism to monitor leaching from treated lumber ?
So I finished my raised bed, shoveled in 2 cubic yards of good top soil with peat mixed in and then ran across the pressure treated wood question. I think that as people get used to the idea that we most places nolonger use CCA, they will stop saying that PTL is bad for raised beds.
And I think 30 years is probably a long estimate, cedar is rot resistant, but it is in full contact with soil. My husband just built 3 raised beds out of pressure treated lumber purchased from our local Menards. I was worried because I am putting up a fence made from PTL and it is right next to my garden.
Dip treated wood has only a thin surface layer of treated wood, the cores and any cut off ends are untreated and will rot like ordinary wood. I built a raised bed, vegetable garden using the 8′ pressure treat yawn post sold at Lowes.
Now, if the galvanized mesh at the bottom of the gardens (to keep the moles from destroying my efforts) won’t kill me off sooner, I can stop worrying. But it is exponentially more expensive than wood, and if I’m growing my own food to save money, where is the savings then?
You either need to use pressure treated wood, or a rot resistant (and expensive) species like teak, cedar, cypress, or redwood.
On February 12, 2002, under pressure by consumers, members of congress and the EPA, the wood industry agreed to stop using arsenic-based wood preservatives as of December 2003. I thank everyone for all the information, my husband insisted on treated wood for our raised beds, I do plan on lining them, but I no longer fear we made the wrong choice! After confirming what type of current PTL was used, I was able to search for the chemicals used: copper and tebuconazole. So using planters made out of new PTL (Copper azole-treated wood, also known as CA-B) is not a concern. I don’t intend to live very long just very well while I live and please remember… stress too can kill!
I have been working with a scientist to develop new liquid fertilizers for both soil and hydroponic gardening. This is information on an actual study done at Ohio state university on using pressure treated wood with raised garden beds. Regarding the Eco wood treatment, beware that it immediately turns your nice new looking wood into an aged-looking greenish gray color. Re-using old deck wood would probably be OK as much of the leaching may have already occurred.
To use this in your garden, where you grow food, is just one of the stupidest things I’ve ever heard of in my life.
I am doing more research on the Australian methods of treating wood but I noticed all the holier than thou comments on using cedar. I came to this site because I found out that a local composting facility is grinding up PT wood along with everything else and then marketing the finished compost to gardeners. One thing I found is 5 year old pressure treated fence posts totally rotted due to water rot.
You want to mix in compost or manure (make sure if you get it fresh it is properly cured) into the bottom 6 inches. The organic matter if not decomposed enough can also be added in the fall a month or so before planting.
Gardeners have used pressure-treated wood for decades in raised beds and as posts, but on December 31, 2003, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) banned the sale of lumber treated with chromated copper arsenate (CCA) for residential use.
According to Miles McEvoy, who works in organic certification with the Washington State Department of Agriculture, no pressure-treated wood is allowed in soils used to grow organic food.
If you’d like to avoid wood treated with chemical preservatives, there are a couple of options.Raised bedsOne choice is to create raised beds by mounding the soil and sloping the sides, avoiding the entire issue of what material to use to contain them.
Raised beds are a fantastic way to increase usable gardening space outdoors even when the ground itself isn’t all that forgiving.
When using plywood and other pressure treated woods in the construction of raised beds, you should know that treated wood products contain varying levels of arsenic, chromium and copper.
If you have beds that are made of treated wood, you can reduce the risk by lining the inside of the beds with a heavy gauge plastic. GREAT ARTICLE CAROL as Dad and I are going to build raised beds in the backyard of our new house to grow our own food in.
Wood, without pressure-treatment, won't last long in the hot and sweaty Southeast, I don't think. AR HZ8 Sun-35)Many alternatives but there is also no reason why you can't use pressure treated wood either.
But all in all, lumber is a more practical option and is easy to handle , build and incorporate.
Nothing wrong with using untreated douglas fir (or whatever they have where you live) in thick dimensions. I also use galvanized metal straps on the corners of mine to keep the edges from separating.


I expect to use the hardware cloth for at least 10 years, which is good, because it is expensive! Mercury gets in the water and the fish drink the water, and since mercury and other heavy metals do not get metabolized, they can permanently build up in fish flesh (this is like lead poisoning in humans). Well you have to assume the lumber leaches dangerous quantities of dangerous compounds into the soil, then you have to assume that the leaching travels adequate distance in the soil, then you have to assume that the plant roots take up the compounds and do not metabolize them (remember, plants metabolize many dangerous compounds, house plants clean our homes of dangerous carcinogens) into some other compound. The type in CCA wood (inorganic arsenic) is more toxic than the natural types, but just for reference, it is already in the food you grow.
Studies have been done showing most leaching only occurs during the first rainy season, and that it doesn’t leach more than a few inches from the wood. Save yourself a few hundred dollars and get pressure treated lumber for your raised bed or other garden projects. I lined them with landscaping fabric mainly because I placed them on the fabric and cut through. At Gardenaut I read a response as to what to build raised beds out of, which is regular lumber, because in ten years, you might want to change the design of your yard, anyway. I think dry stacking or single stacking would be best, as I’m not sure I want the lime from cement binding elements in the soil, either. Stains, sealers, etc, meant for decking, is meant to protect the wood from water than falls and runs off. It would seem that risk of arsenic exposure from using pressure treated lumber is no greater than background.
I just had some planters made, and found out they were built with new pressure treated wood.
In the process of reading questions and comments from everyone posting here, I am far more comfortable building raised beds with PTL and have decided against using plastic to line them given the risks associated with plastic!
So if you like to poison yourself little by little then go ahead but don’t lie to people and say this wood is safe. I am so glad I found this discussion concerning PTL … 99% of the comments were quite helpful. The studies on old Arsenic treated indicate very very low concentrations at even optimal leaching conditions; ie the wood was powdered.
I’m glad that I go through the process of making my own compost and not buy commercial compost. If you like you could avoid planting root veggies in that specific bed, but as you say, most of it should be leached out, and even if it wasn’t, there possibility of transmission is so ultra low.
You don’t want to use pressure treated wood because the chemical they use to treat it will seep into the garden. I used nails to nail together the ends and screwed in the corner supports to help prevent the wood warping and pulling apart. If you add 12 inches of new dirt to the 6 inches you loosened that gives you 18 inches for your plants roots, which is just right. If you use manure of any kind it has to have dried out for 6 months to a year or it will burn your plants. Concerns have focused on the leaching of arsenic from pressure-treated wood into the soil, contaminating plants and people. With the increasing awareness of urban gardening coupled with a tremendous interest in DIY projects, some are taking it upon themselves to  build their own raised beds instead of buying a ready-made and while that can be a great time and money saver, there are some things that you should be aware of should you choose to build one yourself. Knowing that these elements are at play may be enough to scare you away, but the human body actually requires small amounts of all three of these elements and the levels at which they are released into the soil cannot be broadly stated or even estimated as there are a variety of factors that can impact it. When planting edibles in questionable raised beds, the risk can be further reduced by planting all crops no closer than 12” away from the wood surface.
We'll email you weekly (and occasionally bi-weekly) and we'll NEVER share your information. Pressure treated wood hasn't been treated with arsenic (the reason it was prohibited) since 2002 and the newer PT woods are commonly used now where it was prohibited before. A 4x4x8' heart redwood is 20$ here in San Jose, would be costly to make a bed like that but nice. If you use 4x4's they will take longer to rot out, but it will be more expensive and heavier to deal with.
But Osage Orange was the only one that had zero failures during the whole 50 years they did the study. Then you have to assume that the compound is stored in the part of the plant that we eat and at dangerous levels. Copper isn’t toxic to mammals, and in fact it is used in some skin creams and whatnot.
Then, most plants do not take it up from the soil, the ones that do in only small amounts, and the arsenic is stored in the parts we do not eat. Then you can build your beds and line it with plastic sheeting or roofing fabric or some other membrane to stop leaching, and you can not plant root vegetables in it or near the sides of it where the leaching take place. You see, despite the tiny safety risk, CCA pressure treated lumber was banned for consumer use by the EPA in 2003.
It may not leach into your vegetables (What are the long-term studies on PVC filled garden beds?) but then, are you really sure? Would it help to lay treated lumber used for a raised bed on a footing of sand or gravel that could absorb any toxic run-off and prevent seepage spread ?
As a precaution, I decided to line the beds with 4ml visqueen plastic around the lumber so the soil won’t come in contact with the lumber at all. Some people have brought up lining their gardens with plastic to prevent leaching from the PTL.
I work with a lot of reclaimed wood, and so I’m often encountering various species and processes.
I am building a green house with landscape timbers (Which contains less treatment as post)as the uprights, sunk in little concrete with 12 ” high brick and mortar to hold the old windows I have been storing. It’s people like the poster who are smart enough to understand toxins but then still will use them in their environment. Small amounts of mercury are taken up by plants, those plants are eaten by small herbivores which are in turn eaten in greater quantities by others up the food chain. I thought it would be a good size for planters, but someone told me they didn’t think I should use it.
I am residing in Galveston, Texas and was wondering about the toxicities of PTL, and whether they were safe to use or not. I’ll have to take the word of people who did do the studies, because I believe them, not some vague industrial luddite boogeyman.


I decided to do a little reading before purchasing because I had heard the stuff about pressure treated lumber. Therefore other treatment to prevent water adsorption may be a good idea for subterranean use. You should also not breath the dust in when sawing it, as all carpenters know, and never burn pressure treated wood either.
It should also be completely broke down.  A good way to tell is it should not smell anymore. Make sure you loosen the dirt in the ground and add in compost so you will have about 18 inches of loose good soil for the roots. That is one more advantage to boxed in beds; you can grow in all of it so you get more room for the same amount of space. Two compounds, quite similar to each other but sold by different suppliers, have now replaced CCA wood in the residential market.
Studies have shown that arsenic from wood treated with CCA leaches into the soil and that copper, although much less toxic, leaches from ACQ and copper boron azole (CBA, a variant of CA-B).Sally Brown, a research assistant professor of soils at the University of Washington, knows her way around both food and metals. Also consider building raised beds with natural stone, brick, or concrete block.Recycled plastic lumberA second choice is recycled plastic lumber, made out of consumer waste that would otherwise end up in landfills. Factors such as the amount of surface area that is in contact with the soil, as well as the acidity of the soil can work together to determine just how much of the elements are released into the soil and how readily they are absorbed. If you have reason to believe that your raised beds may have been constructed from treated wood and want to be certain of the quality of the soil, you can test your soil easily. In other words, 100 percent of the Osage Orange fence posts they installed in the beginning of the study were still serviceable 50 years later. Any pressure treated lumber manufactured for consumer use after that date has no arsenic in it. Hmmm, what with all the news about bisphenols in our plastic, one wonders if plastic is safe.. After using redwood from an old water tower to build two raised beds last year, I used a linseed oil that had carcinogens added to it. I’m now going to feel a lot more confident in offering designs built with pressure treated lumber. You might as well ask why I don’t do my own crash tests prior to buying a new automobile. I can only assume that nearly all the chemical it was used to be treated with would have leeched out by now.
Starting out as a chef and then a food broker between farmers and restaurants, she became fascinated with soils and went on to earn a PhD in agronomy. Thinking I could keep it from leaching into my soil, I used that black road fabric, and thought about using the black landscape fabric, but then I wasn’t sure about black AZO dyes that also cause cancer, or what leaches out of plastic. What do widow designs look like after 1978 and how old are sealed windows and is there simple free test to determine lead? Pressure treated wood leaches preservatives into soil and plants and can not be used within 25 feet of plants according to current organic standards.
Raised beds cannot be compared to fish and Mercury, because bioaccumulation is not an issue in raised beds. To all those who say, “why even take the chance?”, I say how do you even live your life? However since I want to make this bed part of the garden and possible grow herbs, I want to make certain it is safe. Walking on your garden compacts the soil and your roots will have a harder time growing and spreading. The answer, unfortunately, is not simple.The compounds currently being used are alkaline copper quat (ACQ) and copper azole (CA-B). Brown’s current research includes identifying the mechanisms by which organic residuals reduce the availability of soil metals to plants. This will help reduce the availability of arsenic, chromium and copper to the plants in the bed. So if you’re growing in the ground leave yourself walking rows and walk only in these.
She has some hard-earned opinions.Brown says that if you already have the older, arsenic-treated wood in your garden, don’t panic. With the lumber, hardware, filler, TOTAL COST less than 300 bucks for 112 square foot area.
The copper keeps insects at bay, and the fungicide prevents soil fungus from attacking the wood. Take this philosophy to it’s logical conclusion and you end up living in a bunker eating organic granola and water.
In ACQ, the fungicide is quat, which is also used in swimming-pool chemicals and as a disinfectant. First of all, if plants take up too much copper, they will die before a gardener can eat them. Brand names of this new pressure-treated wood include NatureWood, Wolmanized Outdoor, and Natural Select. In addition, if homegrown vegetables make up a small percentage of the diet, exposure to any metal taken up is insignificant.
Do not use copper near ponds and streams because it is toxic to aquatic life.The perceived risk is another story. Gardening can be just as much an act of faith as it is science, and the opinions of all the scientists in the world may not convince you to let pressure-treated wood contact your soil.
You can isolate pressure-treated wood by lining the inside of a bed with heavy plastic to prevent leaching of chemicals from the wood into the soil. Top your bed with boards of untreated lumber to make a flat top to sit on and to avoid contact with the wood, particularly if you have CCA-treated wood in your garden. Even though the new pressure-treated woods are considered safe, Wolmanized Outdoor, according to its Web site, does not recommend using pressure-treated wood where the preservatives may become a component of food. Its recommendation is to use an impervious liner between the wood and the soil.Consider using alternatives, such as decay-resistant wood like redwood or red cedar. Discuss with your lumber dealer whether its wood is heartwood, which lasts longer then sapwood from the same tree.



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