Many of these techniques can be used right now before you plant your spring garden. Check out this advice and see how you can improve your garden soil and your crop yield this season.
Determining your Soil’s Superpower Capabilities
The first thing you must do is find out what kind of soil you have to work with.
Is it sandy? Is it clay? Is it silt?
Here’s how you find out:
Now that you’ve figured out what type of soil you have, let’s go over what all that means:
Sandy soil is easily penetrated by oxygen and water, but because of the large particles, it allows it to drain too quickly, taking away water and your precious organic fertilizer.
Clay soil is opposite of our sandy soil. It’s particles are too small, which won’t let oxygen and water in very well. While it usually has more nutrients, it holds water in too long, which can create a buildup of salt deposits, causing your plants to die.
Silt is a perfect combination of particles allowing for proper watering and proper draining. Goldilocks would probably prefer it because it’s “just right”. Although, if I can give you some advice, don’t tell Goldilocks about your garden. That girl is a rotten little thief.
Getting your Garden Soil “just right”
To turn your Clay soil into SUPERPOWERED Soil, add…
For loosening up your clay soil, I’d recommend using Cocopeat, Sphagnum Moss, or Gypsum. Each of these would work well for loosening up your clay soil and allowing for oxygen and water to get through. Work in about 1 cu ft bag for about every 10 sq. feet of garden space. Gypsum is the cheapest option, at only about $2-3 a bag. Even if you can’t afford to meet the recommendations, just remember that anything is better than nothing.
Organic material is a MUST for gardening. Not only does it feed your plants with necessary Nitrogen, it also provides food the microorganisms in the dirt. The absolute BEST organic material comes easily and is usually free. Yes, folks, I’m talking about POOP. WELL-AGED & COMPOSTED Chicken manure, goat manure, sheep manure, horse manure, cow manure, are all great providers of natural Nitrogen and supply plenty of organisms as well. BONUS points if you can score poop from an animal who has been fed organic feed/grass. Well-aged manure is a must. Fresh manure has too high levels of Nitrogen, which will chemically BURN up your garden, even if it’s cool outside. It will take a couple months for fresh poop to be able to break down enough to not cause harm to your garden. Then after that you can add about 6 inches on top and till it in well.
Make a 3 to 1 mixture of Peat & Vermiculite, and add about 2 inches to your garden, and till in well. Add about another 4 inches organic material (compost or manure).
To turn your Sandy soil into SUPERPOWERED Soil add…
If your soil is Silt, congratulations! You have the soil that everybody is jealous of! At this point you can simply add some organic material. Lay about 3 inches on top, then till it in well.