Treated wood basement relationship with plants

Asked June 3, 2018, 9:34 AM EDT

My home was built in1982 with a wooden basement rather than cement blocks. Treated lumber, including plywood, are the construction materials. Do some plants not tolerate this situation? I have dropmore honeysuckle, clematis and hostas that are doing well with but have tried several bush-type plants that do not survive. Last year I planted two azaleas. They seemed to be doing fine then but this year are dead. I have planted several other bush-type plants in another spot near the foundation and they, too, have died. One nurseryman told me to plant rock.

Stearns County Minnesota

1 Response

We don't know whether the wood preservative chemicals might account for the plant failures you mentioned.

Most of the information available about this subject relates to potential hazards to people associated with growing fruits and vegetables near treated wood and does not directly address your question. In any case, it seems unlikely that chemicals leaching from the building materials would affect shrubs but not the other plants you mentioned.

The following information may be of interest: