planting boxes out of pressure treated lumber - Knowledgebase Question

Acworth, Ge
Question by tbrohner
March 13, 2010
Hi! Thanks for your help. My husband and I had some 2 X 12 pressure treated lumber left over from a deck we build 2-3 years ago. We recently used them to build plant boxes for vegetables. Someone mentioned that might not be safe since they are chemically treated. Do you know if that is the case? If so, can we cover the insides with plastic or something to protect the vegetables/ourselves?

Answer from NGA
March 13, 2010


I usually shy away from using treated lumber for veggie gardens because you never know whether or not the chemicals might leach into the soil. You can use the lumber if you line the sides with plastic before you fill the planters with soil. And, to err on the safe side, plant root vegetables near the center of the bed and those that bear fruit on branches near the edges. With all these precautions your veggies should be safe. Hope you have a great harvest!

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