Spoiled Soil?

Asked September 2, 2013, 1:25 PM EDT

Our vegetable planter lay unused for a few months and the soil dried out. A cat used it as a litter box. We have removed the fecal matter but is the soil spoiled? Can we add more soil to this and plant anew?

Honolulu County Hawaii

1 Response

That depends upon how much the cat used the planter in relationship to how much silis in the planter. Cat urine is highly toxic to plants. The concentration of uric acid is way past what plants can tolerate. So if it's not practical or too costly to remove the soil and start over I would recommend that you first mix up the soil as thoroughly as you can. This will also allow you to determine that you got all the fecal matter out. Then add as much compost as you can. Even partially decomposed compost will do. The bacteria in the compost will work on that uric acid and break it down into nitrates. This is a good time to check the pH too.