Evaluation of Northwestern Seattle Parking Strip Soil for Urban Horticulture Land Use and Urban Food Production
Murphy, Kathryn Allison
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With urban agriculture on the rise in many cities, areas for urban agriculture and vegetable gardening practices are being explored. The parking strip, street side right-of-way land, is a proposed area for vegetable gardening in Seattle. In the Northwest corner of Seattle, 141 acres of parking strips have been identified. By measuring overall soil quality and lead contamination, parking strip soil was evaluated for suitability for urban vegetable growing. Overall soil health was just slightly deficient of what is ideal for growing vegetables and can be amended with simple and cost effective gardening practices. Levels of soil lead were also measured by traffic class. Low traffic areas showed significantly lower levels of soil lead than higher traffic areas. Parking strip soil represent a much lower risk to public health than anticipated. Soil testing is recommended for any proposed vegetable gardening area to understand existing soil conditions.
- Forestry