Soil Problems

Contaminated Soil

peacewaysprings added on September 6, 2016 | Answered

I got 3 yards of "top soil" that I spread on bare spots on my lawn. I tilled it, seeded, fertilized, watered, and still no germination. Turns out that the soil came from a corn field. If I put manure on it, will that neutralize the soil? I am guessing that the farmer used a chemical like atrazine.

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Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on September 6, 2016

It is certainly possible (and unfortunate) that an herbicide may have been used on this soil. Manure will not neutralize herbicides, but some (including atrazine) will degrade over the course of a few months or a few years. Others take longer to break down.

Is there a way to find out more details on what herbicide may have been used? This will help you determine whether you can wait till it breaks down or whether you will need to remove the soil.

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