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Raised vegetable beds and untreated lumber

Raised vegetable beds and untreated lumber


Old 04-09-14, 05:06 PM
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Raised vegetable beds and untreated lumber

If I use untreated 2X pine for raised beds, how long do you think the lumber would last? There doesn't seem to be definitive proof that using treated lumber is safe. Thanks.
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Old 04-09-14, 06:31 PM
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About a year. There's no proof that ACQ is harmful to humans. Bottom line, you will need to use something that is approved for ground contact, or risk having to do it every year or so.
Old 04-09-14, 06:37 PM
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There will never be definitive proof using treated lumber is safe.

As Larry said, that's your option or rebuild every year.
Old 04-09-14, 06:48 PM
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In any event, the flow of the water will direct a material (like preservatives) in the soil down and outward as the rain falls and you water.

I used treated wood.

Old 04-09-14, 06:51 PM
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If constructing with wood, pressure treated is the most commonly available and inexpensive option. Next would be redwood or cedar if you can find it and afford it.

Another option would be to build the beds of pressure treated wood and line them to prevent the soil from touching the wood. I made some 8 years ago and lined them with galvanized steel flashing and they are still going strong. A few years later I built a big raised bed garden and lined it with 1/4" thick plastic sheets.
Old 04-09-14, 09:48 PM
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Thanks. I thought I'd get at least a few years out of untreated pine. Yikes !!
Old 04-10-14, 02:59 AM
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Cool Alternate Wood Products

You could also look at Timbersil.<click for link>

I used cedar for my last raised beds (lasted 5 years so far) but am thinking I might use this product next time.

Old 04-12-14, 05:28 PM
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Modern treated lumber is more environmentally friendly than the old CCA type, which was banned over five years ago - no arsenic, etc. Untreated lumber used for raised beds won't last very long.

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