Hello, I am Monica Grimbles. I recently tore up all of the grass outside of my home to create a fully edible landscape. The ability to eat all of the plants growing in my garden helps my family's journey to self-sustainability. After all, relying on the supermarket may not always be an option. Even if it is, the food you grow in your yard just tastes and feels so much better. I also like that I do not have to tend the grass to keep the yard green. I change out the plants each year to keep the yard looking fresh and renewed. I will share my plant selections, planting techniques and tools on this site to help others create an edible landscape. I will also discuss all of the ways our professional landscaper helped out with this fun project. Please come back soon.
Soil drainage is critical for the healthy growth of many plants. When soil doesn't drain properly, water settles into the ground around the roots of the plants, then it stays there. Over time, this leads to a condition gardeners know as "wet feet." Many plants respond to wet feet by developing root rot, which cuts off the plant's ability to take in nutrients, stunts the plant's growth and usually leads to premature death. Although some plants can tolerate wet feet and still grow, poor soil drainage can limit the type of plants that can thrive on your property. Improving soil drainage is a slow process that takes time and considerable effort. If you're hoping to grow a wider variety of plants on your property in the coming years, the time to start fixing your soil drainage begins now.
Soil amendments come in different forms. Compost is a nutrient rich organic matter that is loose and crumbly in texture. Compost has good water retention and yet drains perfectly. The addition of compost to compacted, dense soils can improve drainage while still ensuring that the soil will retain water when necessary.
Sand, meanwhile, drains all too well because sand has no ability to absorb water. Adding sand to your soil can help break up the soil particles in your yard, allowing water to flow quickly through the soil without being absorbed. To improve your soil with amendments, add a 4 to 5 inch layer of sand and compost combined top of your soil, then use a tiller to work the amendment into the ground. Add more amendments in layers of 2 to 3 inches at the start of each growing season.
Worms spend all day every day digging holes through the soil, breaking up compacted soil particles and giving water easy passage through the ground. In addition, worms can encourage the formation of organic matter in the ground by breaking up decomposing plant and animal materials in the earth, and that further contributes to proper drainage in the soil. Worms are available for sale at many home and garden centers and can be added to your soil at the time of garden planting.
There are many different types of worms sold commercially. If you buy worms to add to your garden, be sure to buy earthworms meant for use in outdoor gardens. To add them to your garden, dig a hole or several holes in your garden and add the worms at dusk. Cover the hole, and you're done.
Poor drainage is a symptom of a larger problem, but not all soils with poor drainage have the same root cause. What works to improve drainage in one location may not work as well in another location. To ensure that your property's soil gets the best amendments for its soil type, speak with a landscape professional who understands the soil conditions in your region.Share