Brandon and I recently decided to start a vegetable and herb garden and wanted to have our soil tested for its composition and contaminants. We used a company in El Segundo called Wallace Laboratories and it cost $75 per sample and $70 if submitting more than 1 sample. Their results came relatively quickly and we were disheartened to find out that we had moderate levels of lead in our soil. According to our eco-friendly gardening instructor Darren Butler, he has found that the properties in the Eagle Rock/Mount Washington/Highland Park area are relatively high in lead. Boo. 
So what to do? First off, we removed all of the soil from our side yard that we want to designate as garden space. We had it legally dumped (I thought we could just drop it off on the side of the road!). Then I started asking around for good compost soils. A horticulturalist patient told me about Cal Blend, a compost soil that sells for $12.95 per cubic yard. She swears by this stuff. I also hunted around online and found a guy named Tim Dundon. He’s a legend in the Pasadena area and calls himself the guru of doo doo. I’m not kidding. He looks like he belongs in Humboldt County and not in the LA area and has been lovingly caring for his gigantic compost heap since 1973. He uses wood chips from trees in a pristine area in Oregon, horse manure from a local stable that really takes care of their equine friends. Anyway, he offers his compost soil for free and charges a small delivery fee. He does this out of the goodness of his own heart and thinks everyone should be growing their own food. I thought that was too good to be true so then we went to check out his property and obtain a sample for testing. So we did and the results are below. They came out really clean so now we can have him deliver us some rich, wormy compost for us to start living off our own land! 
Tim Dundon 
(626) 794-1351 


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