Preparing Soil

Posted by Tammy Sons on Oct 03, 2015

Soil Preparation

Soil preparation is an integral aspect with regards to having a successful garden. Every successful gardener will confess that good soil preparation is, in most cases, the key to a successful garden. For any crop to thrive, it must meet specific standards. More specifically, more often than not, crops thrive in gardens having nutritious soil. Not every soil will have the needed requirements for vegetables to thrive. In this regard, some need a helping hand.

Soil testing

Testing your soil will reveal important information that you can use to determine the ideal crop for planting. Additionally, the resultant information will also help you determine the intervention measures. More specifically, a successful soil test will reveal the soil's soluble salts, PH, lime, texture, and many other relevant attributes. It is worth noting that there are usually two kinds of tests. The first one is called a general test and will reveal the general components of the soil in most cases. In this regard, this kind will not reveal the advanced soil properties. The second is called the advanced soil test. This kind will mainly focus on components that could not be identified using the former test, thus the naming.

More often than not, you will find few ways to carry out the process in question. The first option is purchasing a soil test kit. Depending on the needed information, you could either go for the available test kits or the more advanced kind. Note that the latter option will, in most cases, be expensive. In general, the only information needed for preparing the soil can be obtained using the first option. This kind is relatively cheap and will serve the purpose. Planting deciduous trees also is an excellent way to garden.

Soil PH

As mentioned earlier, soil testing is essential because it will help you identify the needed components to act effectively: as such, after testing, it's time to act. More specifically, amend and correct the condition of the soil. Regarding correcting the soil condition, especially regarding the soils' PH, there are few points to note. To start with, note that a high PH and a relatively Low PH spells doom for all your garden exploits. As such, a neutral Ph is needed for a healthy garden. At a neutral stage, usually 7, microbial activity is at the pick, and the plants can absorb nutrients.

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A soil P.H. between 5.5-7 is ideal and creates a healthy environment for your crops. Anything more or lesser than this figure will result in nutrients deficiency or increasing toxic levels. You can also enhance nutrients intake and increased microbial activities by applying organic matter. Lastly, note that it will be almost impossible to identify the soil's P.H. for old and aged manure.

The importance of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium

Plants' nutrients will mainly involve the three components. The same components are available in fertilizers, though in different forms. In most cases, the three components are indicated as initials. You will mostly find the N.P.K., letters representing nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Potassium, respectively. The first component is highly beneficial to crops since it promotes strong leaves. Nitrogen also promotes the dark green color witnessed on Greener crops, including; cabbages, broccoli, and lettuce.

The second component promotes faster root growth and will often lead to stable crops since it promotes efficient roots' growth. For crops that develop after pollination, this component is highly advised. Lastly, potassium helps the crops to become disease-resistant and increases the root's vigor.

Quick soil fixes

Simple ways for amending your soil include the following. For clay soil, add compost. Sandy soils will go along well with aged manure. You could also use sawdust and Nitrogenous components. Soils regarded to be sandy can also be amended by simply applying clay-rich soils. Lastly, you can improve silt soils by adding compost. Note that it is highly recommended that the soil is exclusively silt. As such, other forms such as beach sand are highly discouraged. Straws will also improve this kind of soil, especially when it has been prepared correctly.