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It's either awesome or a potential problem

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It's either awesome or a potential problem

Post  ncst8guy on 7/29/2013, 3:20 pm

LONG story short,

My neighbors are kind of recluse.  They dont' come out much, and "tidy up" even less often, if ever.

Today the guy that takes care of their yard decided to haul some stuff away.  i went to help him.  Once we cleared out some brush piles and what not, I noticed all this black, moist dirt/mud everywhere.  I immediately thought it was rich composting material.  But part of this is downhill from years old containers such as coolant, an old battery etc.  Stuff I would be scared to ever let touch my dirt.  I checked all caps, and they were on tight, but I was still worried.  This stuff has sat on the bottom of a retaining wall as water ran over top for probably 15 years.  It was 3 inches thick in most spots.

So I grabbed 3 loads of what we determined to be "good" stuff, but the MRS wanted me to fill low spots in the yard with it, out of fear Evil or Very Mad.   Turns out, divorces are pretty expensive, so I obliged her. 

But there are probably 5 more wheelbarrow loads of stuff that looks just like this.  Wish I could test it to see if any transmission fluid or gas etc was in there.

it is LOADED with earthworms.  HUNDREDS of them.  I don't know if that is a determining factor or not though.

Wish I knew whether or not it was free of contaminants

 

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Re: It's either awesome or a potential problem

Post  sanderson on 7/29/2013, 4:57 pm

The presence of worms is a positive sign, along with the fact that the lids are still tight.

Have you done a wet sniff and a dry sniff test? Literally. You can often detect petroleum or hydrocarbons. My DH calls me The Nose for those products. You can always have soil tests for lead (battery) and Total "something or another" [Boy, use it or lose it!] test for petroleum products. Just call the lab of choice and ask what king of containers to use for the soil samples. A ziplock baggie is fine for Lead and other heavy metals. But, Petroleums need a glass jar or paper bag, I think. Something like that. For peace of mind for your marriage?? Very Happy 

Do you have a Haz Mat drop off site in your area? You may be the appointed one to properly dispose of the haz mat materials. In general, it's a good idea because after the neighbors move, someday, another family will move in. Also, you can have some peace of mind for your property.
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Re: It's either awesome or a potential problem

Post  llama momma on 7/29/2013, 5:03 pm

In some places worms are used to bioremediate the soil of heavy metals.  So the fact you see worms doesn't exactly mean the soil is organically healthyto grow veggies in.. You can google worms and bioremediation for more info.
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Re: It's either awesome or a potential problem

Post  boffer on 7/29/2013, 8:26 pm

Don't let the price tempt you. Better safe than sorry.
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