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Hello Guest!
Welcome to the official Square Foot Gardening Forum.
There's lots to learn here by reading as a guest. However, if you become a member (it's free, ad free and spam-free) you'll have access to our large vermiculite databases, our seed exchange spreadsheets, Mel's Mix calculator, and many more members' pictures in the Gallery. Enjoy.

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Pressure Treated Wood Question

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camprn
cparish
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Post  cparish 2/13/2013, 3:55 pm

Hello Everyone,
I have a friend who has offerred to GIVE me some 5/4 x 6 x 8' premium wood that was left over from a building project. I know that SFG says "not to use treated lumber."

This lumber is from Home Depot and is a "Weather Shield" product. It has been "pressure treated" with "copper azole" compounds.

I have contacted the manufacturer of the wood and the pressure treatment process. They both have referred me to their websites for FAQ's and Datasheets on their process and say that they are "safe for use in raised bed gardens".

The wood has some numbers (I don't know what they mean): .05 PCF and SCS-EPP-01969

Here is a direct quote from the website:

Can treated wood be used in gardens?
Yes. Scientific studies have proven that any copper that may migrate from the treated wood becomes biologically inactive, thus causing no eco-toxic or other environmental impacts. YellaWood® brand products are gentle enough to be used in raised vegetable gardens and durable enough to provide long-term protection.


Do any of you know more about this? I want to follow the SFG procedures. I don't know much about wood. This is really nice lumber and FREE, so you can see why I ask.

Any help / advice is greatly appreciated.

Blessings!

Chuck (Vicksburg, MS)
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Post  camprn 2/13/2013, 5:21 pm

As far as I know the copper treated wood is fine for using in the vegetable garden. It is not acceptable if you want to be certified organic. The process of injecting arsenic into the wood was discontinued a few decades ago.

Here is a previous thread that talks about it some more.
https://squarefoot.forumotion.com/t10241-pressure-treated-plywood?highlight=pressure+treated+wood

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Post  cparish 2/13/2013, 5:32 pm

Thanks for the quick reply! It seems like really nice lumber and it is FREE so I can't beat that. I will be able to make 4 - 4' x 4' gardens!

Thanks again,

Chuck Very Happy
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Post  walshevak 2/13/2013, 6:31 pm

If you have any doubts, you can line the boxes with weed block to keep a separation.

Kay

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Post  Unmutual 2/14/2013, 7:10 am

camprn wrote:As far as I know the copper treated wood is fine for using in the vegetable garden. It is not acceptable if you want to be certified organic. The process of injecting arsenic into the wood was discontinued a few decades ago.

Here is a previous thread that talks about it some more.
https://squarefoot.forumotion.com/t10241-pressure-treated-plywood?highlight=pressure+treated+wood

+1. If the wood had been from the 1980's or before, I would have my doubts. Current pressure treatment of wood is safe since it doesn't use arsenic, but copper(Yellawood uses a different treatment, but is still okay).
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Post  gregrenee88 2/14/2013, 9:01 am

camprn wrote:As far as I know the copper treated wood is fine for using in the vegetable garden. It is not acceptable if you want to be certified organic. The process of injecting arsenic into the wood was discontinued a few decades ago.

Here is a previous thread that talks about it some more.
https://squarefoot.forumotion.com/t10241-pressure-treated-plywood?highlight=pressure+treated+wood

That is what we did. I even contacted Mel and he suggested the same thing if that is what we wanted to do.
Renee
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Post  Hoggar 2/14/2013, 2:07 pm

Newer copper treated wood will not hurt your plants but if you are truly concerned about it getting into your growing soil I would use plastic not weedcloth as weedcloth is permeable and will allow the chemicals to leach through any pressure treated wood made after the 80s will not have Arsenic in it and will be safe to use on your garden as a bonus the copper treatment will keep snails from climbing the sides of your boxes. I put copper tape on my boxes to keep out the snails, it makes a world of difference.
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