Replacing soil contaminated with lead

Asked May 17, 2018, 5:36 PM EDT

I have read that it is enough to replace 8” of lead-contaminated soil. I have read that most nutrients are concentrated in the top 6” of soil. Our home is 110 years old, so it seems practical to assume that our soil is contaminated with lead. We don’t grow vegetables or fruit, but I have abandoned my herb garden and begun growing herbs in containers. Could I safely replace 8” of soil in my herb garden and grow herbs in the ground? Thanks for your help. Go well and stay well.

Baltimore Maryland

1 Response

You will have to test your soil for lead before we can answer your question. You should begin by reading our website and publication HG 18 'Lead in Garden Soils' for information on soil testing, lead levels, and reducing health risks.

There is a listing of soil labs on the back page. The University of Delaware includes a test for lead in their basic soil test. Let them know what you are growing. You can attach your soil test results to this reply.