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Can car/truck exhaust from a busy street leave a toxic residue on my veggies?

 
Dan Wallace
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I live on a very busy main street with about 20-30k cars per day.

Does any one know how dangerous the particulate is from car and truck exhaust when consuming vegetables? Is washing with water sufficient or is something like vinegar more effective?
My front yard would seem to be at the most danger but Im unsure how far the particulate can travel; is the backyard unsafe as well? What about the neighbors in back of us? And in back of them? So on so forth

Sigh, cars
 
George Lee
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Location: Athens, GA/Sunset, SC
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Lately I'd be more worried about the rain honestly, haha, but sure it's an issue all the same. If the geoengineering is as widespread as investigators say nearly all of us have alumnium content in our soils, making it quite tough to grow in some areas (notably city centers). Adequate washing coventional or organic produce is advised. There are soil-borne pathogens just as dangerous if not more dangerous than a little carbon fallout... Most cars must run unleaded these days, but theres still a bit of lead in it regardless.. ALL soils should be properly tested as you progress with your project..as most soils in America have a lead content (sometime considerable and imminently dangerous). The risk is always there. It's how we address these problems.

Have your soil tested at your local extension office!

Peace -


 
Dan Wallace
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We've had the soil tested, there's lead.
We grow in 2-3ft tall beds filled with clean soil and compost though and only grow fruiting shrubs and trees in the contaminated soil

I'm concerned about particulate from exhaust (especially diesel). I'm sure it's no good for my lungs but Im wondering about the effects of eating it
 
gary gregory
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Location: northern california, 50 miles inland from Mendocino, zone 7
 
George Lee
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"In the real world we don't see the complete combustion of diesel fuel, so what comes out the exhaust is a widely varying mixture of substances from elemental carbon to potentially unburned fuel."





 
John Polk
steward
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Location: Currently in Lake Stevens, WA. Home in Spokane
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I used to live about 100 yards off of a busy highway, and if we swept/hosed off our porch and windows every day, the next morning they would be covered again with a fine black sooty dust.  As the freeway system "improved", much of the truck traffic had a quicker way to go around us (and our wealthy neighbors to the north managed to get a ban on non-local delivery truck traffic) the situation greatly improved.  I believe that the exhaust (and tire dust) residue does have a negative effect, and would certainly wash all produce before eating.  It is just one of the prices we pay for living near civilization.
 
Brenda Groth
pollinator
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Location: North Central Michigan
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i'm not sure about your veggies but the exhaust of a parked car will kill trees growing nearby, happens all the time in Michigan, esp with PINES
 
josh brill
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The folks at Vermont Compost wont take leaves for that exact reason.  I can't remember what he said the residue is exactly though.  He said his compost is one of very few that dont have a registrable amount of what ever the compound was.
 
George Lee
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Location: Athens, GA/Sunset, SC
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Location: Central Florida
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Could you build a plant hedge to sheild the exhaust? I have thought about my front yard too. And thinking I could put a hedge to help filter the toxins. But then it still will leach into the soil. But it would be better than nothing.
 
jack spirko
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The air you breath in daily has likely 60-65,000 know "toxins" and air frankly moves around.

All I can say is this, given two choices,

1. Apple grown in the divider of a major interstate highway, done so with compost and 100% natural means.

or

2. Apple grown in a very remote conventional orchard with almost no exposure to cars but sprayed with various chemicals over the season.


Give me the one from the middle of I-30 any day of the week.
 
Adrien Lapointe
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Location: Kingston, Canada (USDA zone 5a)
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I used to live in the middle of a big city and our windows would get covered with a black soot. Definitely not something I would want to eat. However, this soot washed fairly easily.

I agree with Jack and I would absolutely choose veggies/fruits grown in a city core that are possibly covered with that soot that washes away rather than eat fruits and veggies that were grown with very toxic chemicals. Especially since a lot of those chemicals end up inside the fruits/veggies.
 
2017 Permaculture Design Course at Wheaton Labs
http://richsoil.com/pdc
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