New Fear Unlocked! Did You Know Potting Soil Is Flammable?
All that hot weather we've had this summer had people sharing some wild things on social media. I came across a post from someone who showed a charred deck, and the caption simply said something like potting soil did this. So after some online web sleuthing, I determined that indeed this picture found online, COULD be true!
Yeah, cue the ominous music, potting soil, you know that bag that is probably sitting in your garage, is flammable enough that it did $3 million dollars in damage a few years ago in Colorado Springs, and the Canadian Fire Marshalls Office has online warnings about potting soil!
Generally speaking, when you buy a bag of potting soil, at least in my experience one bag will last you about a decade of homeownership, so it will often dry out if you leave the bag open or unsealed. It's when the potting soil goes dry that it is at its greatest risk of starting on fire, either by itself or with some help from a stray cigarette or spark.
You might be wondering, how can soil catch on fire? Well potting soil really isn't dirt. It is a mix of different items like wood chips and peat moss. So when those ingredients in the potting soil get dry, the risk associated with fire grows.
So do you have to worry about that bag of potting soil spontaneously combusting in your garage? Not really, unless you are smoking in your garage or are working with something that sparks like grinding metal or welding. But it wouldn't be a bad idea to add some water to that bag if it's all dried out, or better yet, toss it out and grab a new bag.
If you are like me it'll last you another decade.
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