Answer: There are any number of possible reasons why an area would fail to grow a variety of plants. Soil contamination is possible, but probably unlikely. More likely causes would include competing tree roots (maples are especially difficult and black walnuts are allelopathic), compacted soil or poor drainage, unsuitable pH or lack of nutrients, over or under watering, using water that has been treated by a water softener, earlier treatment with long term herbicides, salt runoff from deicing treatments, poor quality plants, and improper planting and/or establishment techniques. You might want to consult with your county extension (265-5051)to try to trouble shoot the cause and then figure out how to rectify the situation. I hope this helps get you thinking about the types of things that could be going wrong.
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