Is it Safe to Eat Garden Produce After a Flood?

June 26, 2024

We have had a call about eating garden produce regarding the recent flooding. Attached below is link to an Iowa State University Extension and Outreach article dated June 25, 2024, answering this question. Due to the amounts of contamination with the June 2024 Spencer, IA flood, it is wise to start over or perhaps consider waiting until the spring of 2025. Iowa State University Extension and Outreach suggests “Following a flood, the safest course of action is to discard all plants and produce from the garden.”

We do know that sewage systems in Dickinson County, Clay County and others public sewage systems released raw sewage into waterways in this area. Cattle lots, hog confinements and sewage lagoons were also affected, and animal manures have also contaminated flood waters. I talked to a person this morning who reported oily residue in the garden and grass!!! 

If your garden has been flooded and you still wish to grow some garden produce, I suggest doing raised bed gardens. We have complimentary plastic tree pots that are ideal for growing garden produce. My entire garden is in these black plastic containers, and they are doing great! We have a good collection of vegetable seeds on our seed racks, and we can get more! Our Bumper Crop soil blend is a great product for growing produce above ground. I have more than once planted my entire garden on July 4th and had tremendous yields. You might find that raised bed gardening and growing produce in containers is easier, faster and there is usually little if any weeding!

– Todd Brockshus, Senior Horticulturalist,they%20are%20ready%20to%20harvest.