Garden soil preparation is vital if you want great vegetation to grow in your garden. It is important for the soil to be in good condition because only when the soil has been prepared well will the plants grow properly. Garden soil should be loose and crumbly and has to be capable of holding nutrients and moisture well. Alongside, it should also be well aerated so that drainage is good. The perfect garden bed will have the right amounts of oxygen, water and nutrients. The type of soil depends on your area and location but no matter what type it is garden soil preparation can be done. You have to be a little patient because it could be time consuming. Here are a few steps to prepare a good garden soil or potting soil that could help you out.
Tips To Garden Soil Preparation
The first thing to do in garden soil preparation would be to clean out the location such as the grass in that particular area of your garden. If you see any materials in these which you could use again, keep them. Discard the rest. You could use a herbicide to do this. Do this properly and make sure all the weeds are removed
Chances are that you will need to purchase new material or simply gather it from another part of your garden. Always use the top soil because all the nutrients the plant needs is there.
During garden soil preparation, you should be sure that the soil is not very compacted. Add organic matter such as leaf mold, fine pine bark, sand, peat moss and compost. Make sure the height of the organic matter is three to four inches. Organic matter is important because it’ll build the soil up and let oxygen pass inside. Alongside it will help drainage.
Gardeners who are facing problems because they have sandy soil can use organic matter as a boon. This is because sandy soil dries out quickly and has very low water holding capacity. Organic matter helps retain the water and hold the nutrients too.
Use a spade to turn soil over so that everything gets mixed properly. Make sure you penetrate about 8 inches inside. Break the clods and make sure the soil is level.
During garden soil preparation, you should also take care of the draining capacity along with the water holding capacity. If you don’t know how to take care of it, there is a simple experiment that will help you out.
How To Test Draining Capacity
- All you need is a large sized coffee can. Remove the top as well as the bottom of the can.
- Dig a hole in the soil which is about 4 inches deep.
- Place the can in the hole and make sure the soil is firm around it.
- Now fill the can with water and measure the level of water. Wait for an hour and measure again.
- If the level has dropped by two inches, it is normal. If it drops to more than 5 inches, it is excessive and if it does not drop at all, the drainage is very poor.
You could also install a French Drain system. This includes the installation of a plastic drain which is of 4 inches and is perforated. It is installed round your garden’s perimeter. It’s a proven drain system that will ensure that your garden plot doesn’t soak up with too much water.
In terms of soil additives, there are numerous options today from synthetic to natural options. Hence, it is better to use natural soil enhancements such as vegetable and fruit peelings, chipped wood from pruning your trees nearby and all sorts of organic matter you can find near you. You can simply do a compost and add the compost soil in your gardening soil. By going all natural, you can ensure that you’re not harming the environment in any way.