Best Garden Soil Amendments
The goal of every gardener is to reap a good harvest, whether we’re planting fruits, vegetables, herbs, a flower garden, etc.. it gives great joy to reap the rewards of the time and money that was invested. But to be able to have success there are several key components which are involved garden soil being one of them.
Good garden soils are at the root of having much success which many have overlooked leaving them confused when they don’t have the kind of results that’s expected. As mention earlier garden soil is at the root of having a garden that’s thriving, therefore, we should start here (the soil) and build from the ground up.
One key component that’s used to build garden soils are soil amendments, what are soil amendments, and how do they work?
Soil amendments are materials that are worked in the soil to improve the soil quality such as the soil’s ability to absorb water, nutrients, and proper airflow to get to the roots of garden plants where microbial activity is present. Below we will be discussing eight of these amendments to improve your soil.
Soil test ph
However, before we discuss soil amendments one important factor is getting a soil ph test done first. A soil’s test will provide information on your soil’s ph, nutrient content, and soil texture. A soil test can be done by purchasing a soil ph kit or if you prefer hiring a professional that’s trained in this area. Shop around however for offers that fit your budget.
8 Soil Amendments
Compost is a gardener’s dream, this black gold will put you ahead of the game by giving you the kind of results that will have your garden plants growing healthy. The use of compost can and will benefit both us and our garden plants
Our plants will grow healthy with this black gold, while we reap a good harvest and save a few bucks at the same time. What I mean by saving a few bucks is when it comes to composting we can use what’s found in our kitchen and yards to build a compost pile.
My wife and I started a compost pile a few days ago and are looking forward for our very own black gold, kitchen scraps such as vegetables, fruits, eggshells, and other organic material can be used along with shredded paper. When it comes to material that can be used from around the yard, grass clippings that are healthy and weed-free along with leaves that are raked up can be used.
Your compost pile depending on the size may take a few months to give you that black gold but it’s worth the investment.
Manures such as cow, chicken, and horse manure will build your soil, these materials are rich in nutrients and will give your plants that boost that they need. Manures are expensive so shop around to find the best price or when your garden center or nursery may be having a sale.
Back in the day when I worked as a professional groundsman for a five-star resort peat moss was a material that we used on a wide scale in many of the plant beds. Peat moss is a soilless mix from peat bogs which is a biodiverse habitat for plants, insects, animals, and birds.
Although peat moss does not contain any nutrient content this soil amendment can retain moisture and help in adjusting the soil ph. For peat moss to moisten requires that it gets plenty of water, peat moss can also be used in sandy soils to help with water retention.
Sand also has its place in the landscape and gardens, sand is also known for its ability to drain well. The use of sand to improve the drainage of clay soils and to help when top dressing garden lawns have been used for years to bring good results.
The use of worm casting to improve garden soil will work wonders, I know that for many the thought of worms may cause shivers but the presents of worms in your soil will be of great benefit. For more on worm casting here how it’s done.
A common material that’s used to improve garden soil is topsoil, this soil can be purchased from nurseries and hardware stores. Topsoils are used just as is or amended with other materials to condition the soil.
Cover crops also known as green manure is grown on soils that are unused and then tilled or plowed under. Once decompose will provide nutrients for the soil. Cover crops such as vetch and clover will give great results.
Bark ground is derived from different types of tree barks to provide and amendment that will improve the quality of your soil.
The final word on garden soil amendments
Adding soil amendments to your existing soils for improvements is a great way to build your soils giving you the results of healthy plants that are thriving whereby you can reap a good harvest. If you have a soil that’s doesn’t perform well all is not lost.
You can still have the garden that you always wanted with plants that are thriving, it’s all a matter of using one or more of these materials and you will be on your way to having much garden success.
About the author
Norman loves being in the garden, both at home and for his job....
he is 'Natures Little helper' being outdoors, growing his vegetables and flowers from an early age.
Now having spent over 22 years in the profession he want to give some of his knowledge to others...
his vast array of hints and tips you will find scattered over this site will help you no end growing plants in your garden.