Unimpro Ving the Soil

One of the biggest myths in landscaping is that you have to "improve" the soil to get the best performance from plants. The truth is that you really can't fix soil. Some pioneering research in the 1970s proved that in most cases, amending soil is detrimental both to the soil and to the plants. Here are several reasons:

  • Incorporating amendments into the soil displaces nutrients and reduces its water-holding capacity in many cases (depending on your soil type).
  • Fluffy, highly porous planting pits invite rainwater in, drowning the plants if internal soil drainage is poor.
  • Conversely (and perversely), those fluffy pits dry out much faster than the surrounding native soil during dry periods, so plants suffer.
  • Roots circle around in soft, amended soil and never venture out into the native soil where they belong, especially in clay soils.

Spend your time and money improving the soil food web by inoculating it with mycorrhizal fungi, beneficial bacteria, and other living goodies — not by working on the texture.

Chapter 16 gives you the scoop on soil improvement. In the long run, of course, it's far better to match plants to the soil you have.

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Homeowners Guide To Landscaping

Homeowners Guide To Landscaping

How would you like to save a ton of money and increase the value of your home by as much as thirty percent! If your homes landscape is designed properly it will be a source of enjoyment for your entire family, it will enhance your community and add to the resale value of your property. Landscape design involves much more than placing trees, shrubs and other plants on the property. It is an art which deals with conscious arrangement or organization of outdoor space for human satisfaction and enjoyment.

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