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Recovering from Flooding? Watch Out in the Garden

Published on NewsOK Published: September 23, 2013

*Don't eat anything raw. If soft fruits and leafy veggies can be cooked, make sure to cook them well (in the case of root vegetables, sanitize them in a mild bleach solution, peel them, and cook them). On the other hand, thin-skinned veggies like peas and tomatoes should be discarded.

*If a plant is growing but hasn't produced yet, you should be aware that it can be contaminated after the flood by splashback from the soil. Follow the precautions above before eating anything.

*For seeds that haven't sprouted yet, the same cautions apply.

*Soil should be allowed to rest for 90 days before replanting, to allow any hazardous materials present to break down.

*Make sure to protect yourself, too: wash your hands throughly after working in the garden, and maintain separate clothes and shoes for working in the garden during flood recovery. Keep young children, pets, and anyone with immunocompromise (including pregnant women and people with chronic illnesses) out of the garden until it's safe.

Katie Marks writes for

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