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Thread: Old decking (presumably treated) for raised beds

  1. #1
    Right Shed Fred is offline Seedling
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    Default Old decking (presumably treated) for raised beds

    I have just taken over a second half plot, and this time, I'm planning the layout more carefully, to ensure better and more efficient use of the space.
    Raised beds feature heavily in my new plan, I've found them really useful for keeping both weeds and (my) children out of the growing areas...

    So I felt pretty pleased when I bagged a whole bunch of old decking on freecycle, as I plan to use this to make the beds.

    However, I am now concerned that my decking treasure I was so pleased with just 24h ago, might be treated in some way which would cause leaching of undesirable and potentially health hazardous preservatives/insecticides/fungicides into the soil.

    Am I paranoid or is this a justified concern?!

    Help!

  2. #2
    nickdub is offline Early Fruiter
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    Personally I wouldn't worry about using it - but if you want to be super careful stack it up somewhere where the elements can get at it over the next 9 months, then put it in its final place next Spring.

  3. #3
    veggiechicken's Avatar
    veggiechicken is offline Warning, May contain nuts
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    If you're really worried you could line the beds to keep the soil away from the wood.
    Aberdeenplotter likes this.
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  4. #4
    Right Shed Fred is offline Seedling
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    Ok, so I am perhaps being a bit paranoid. It's old stuff from a guy getting rid of his decking, so it's a bit weather worn already. It doesn't look like it had any other treatments recently.

    Lining it is a definite possibility... I'll look into pond lining and similar... I think lining it might come down to how much energy / patience I have left once I've finished making the raised beds

    Thanks!

  5. #5
    SarrissUK's Avatar
    SarrissUK is online now Early Fruiter
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    Hi there Fred! I love the name lol

    I wouldn't worry too much about lining it unless you have spare plastic laying around that could be used.

  6. #6
    burnie is offline Veggie gardener
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    I wouldn't be too worried, the only things that are now still creosoted are telephone/power line poles, all the rest of the stuff is usually wax based and little of that is applied. Pressure treated means pressure was applied when applying, you apply pressure on a washing up liquid bottle to get the stuff out and I think a lot of the wood treatment is applied in a similar manner, just squirted on
    Snadger likes this.

  7. #7
    bikermike is offline Cropper
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    I personally use pressure-treated wood. In my view, the increased in duration of the wood is worth it with modern chemicals that have limited toxicity.

    Pressure-treating means the wood is put in a tank with the preservative and pressurised to force more preservative further in
    https://www.gardenfurnitureland.com/...alized-timber/

    Pressure-treating makes no difference as a process in contamination risk - it depends what it's been treated with. I don't think anyone has used properly nasty stuff like creosote for some time.

  8. #8
    Urban's Avatar
    Urban is offline Rooter
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    I lined my beds with weed suppressing fabric when I built mine. Although it's probably not necessary. Just wanted to keep the soil from touching the wood
    Stan79 likes this.

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