Newly Registered
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Joined: Wed Jun 30, 2004 6:59 pm

Soil Sterilizer - Calmix & my Lawn

My neighbour has recently dug out all of his grass and replaced it with crusher dust. Instead of using landscape fabric and Roundup to controll weeds and grass he spread a granular soil sterilizer over his entire yard (I beleive it was called "Calmix").
Needless to say, in the last week I have lost about 2 feet of lawn down one side of my yard (permanently I suspect) and we haven't even had any rain since it was applied.
I have recently planted several shrubs within 2 to 6 feet of the property line and I am concerned about their well being as well.
Would a continuous strip of 6" plastic edging minimize the dammage by stopping the chemical from invading my yard any further?
If anyone knows of a way to correct, controll or counteract the problem your advise will be greatly appreciated. :(
Last edited by jeffp on Tue Jul 20, 2004 10:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.

The Helpful Gardener
Posts: 7493
Joined: Tue Feb 10, 2004 2:17 am
Location: Colchester, CT

Damn Jeff, that is a horror story; you have shown incredible restraint in dealing with your neighbor.

I am unfamiliar with granular weed killer, but quick research shows three to five year efficacy! I hope you aren't on well water; this sounds like serious stuff. The only info I found was all industry stuff telling you how wonderful it is and touting the benefits; my eyes were crossing, as to even contemplate using this makes me want to throttle somebody. I am a fan of organic practices who will use chemicals as a last resort; I have no familiarity with this product and hope never to have contact with it.

That doesn't help you much. I would find out exactly what you are dealing with (Calmex turned up a California chain of Mexican food stores). If it is having that kind of effect without rain, I don't think six inches is enough; you may want to have a back hoe come inand dig out a trench on that side. Don't want to go to that expense? Put it all on your neighbor; he hasn't a leg to stand on and frankly, I think you ought to sue the shorts off him, to set an example.

I will try and get some more info on this heinous stuff and will post here as soon as I find anything. Newt, do you have any suggestions?

Greener Thumb
Posts: 1868
Joined: Wed May 26, 2004 2:44 am
Location: Maryland zone 7

My goodness!! What a nightmare! I'm wondering if there are any restrictions in the covenants of the community where you live about removing all the lawn. That might be a place to start. I would also check with your local government about laws regarding damage to your property. I know that most communities have laws about damage from falling trees and limbs. There should also be some kind of law about damaging a neighbor's property. I would also consider contacting the EPA - Environmental Protection Agency and your local Extension service to find out what can be done to either remove your soil or remineralize it.

I tend to agree with Scott that you will need to remove all the affected soil and replace it.

I'll think on this and see if I can come up with more. Please let us know what happens.

Good luck,



Are you sure on the name of the chemical in question? I did a search on calmex and came up blank?


Calmix, not Calmex.

The Helpful Gardener
Posts: 7493
Joined: Tue Feb 10, 2004 2:17 am
Location: Colchester, CT

Still digging on this one; here's something I've found...


This is chlorophenoxyl (like most herbicides) so the human toxicity is low, but grasses have some resistance so if he's killed that much of your grass, he's probably WAY over recommended dosages. Fgures that someone dumb enough to use it would use it wrong...

Interesting that we are no longer allowed to use bromide gassing as we were used to doing years back, but the granular is acceptable for home use...



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