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Old December 24, 2020   #1
Master Shake
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Default My soil is absolute garbage....

Hi peoples,

Edit- I just had a sook earlier and vented but i'm feeling better now.

Sorry for the meltdown.... Merry Christmas to everyone.

Last edited by Master Shake; December 24, 2020 at 08:22 AM.
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Old December 24, 2020   #2
biscuitridge
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We need more details in order to be any help, how many square feet area, how many cubic feet or yards of compost, was the garden soil tested, any other amendments or fertilizer added,etc, etc. Sorry about your down hill progess!
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Old December 25, 2020   #3
zendog
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Now I really want to see the original message, lol...
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Old December 26, 2020   #4
Lasairfion
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Sheet mulch everything. Doesn't matter what you've got; it'll make a difference to improve any type of soil from hard pan to clay to sand.

Stick down old newspapers, cardboard etc and then just find whatever biological material you can, whether that's fallen leaves, grass clippings, woodchips, old straw/hay, vegetable peelings... at a push even gravel/small stones will make a difference in retaining moisture if your soil is dry. Ask around and your neighbours might be quite happy to let you have their green waste; I've even persuaded the electric company when trimming trees away from the wires to dump the chippings at my place.

Plant anything that will grow and let it go mad as green manure / cover crop; cut it all down when it's as big as it'll get and let it rot into the soil.

Dig ditches on contour to manage water flow and pile up mounds of soil, also on contour for that water to soak into. Maybe even do a hugelkultur mound if you've got old logs/tree branches around (these both work to trap moisture where it's hot and dry, or to manage water where you have too much). Check out Charles Dowding, Paul Gautschi and Back to Reality

Growing anything in my soggy, windy, half shaded and cold garden is a battle but I'm slowly getting there. You can too. Do this for at least 3 years and you'll start to see a real difference in the soil.

Have a good Christmas!

Last edited by Lasairfion; December 26, 2020 at 04:45 AM. Reason: Added links
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Old December 26, 2020   #5
Master Shake
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zendog View Post
Now I really want to see the original message, lol...
It wasn't too bad Just complaining about my soil problems with some censored swear words, you didn't miss much.
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Old December 26, 2020   #6
Master Shake
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lasairfion View Post
Sheet mulch everything. Doesn't matter what you've got; it'll make a difference to improve any type of soil from hard pan to clay to sand.

Stick down old newspapers, cardboard etc and then just find whatever biological material you can, whether that's fallen leaves, grass clippings, woodchips, old straw/hay, vegetable peelings... at a push even gravel/small stones will make a difference in retaining moisture if your soil is dry. Ask around and your neighbours might be quite happy to let you have their green waste; I've even persuaded the electric company when trimming trees away from the wires to dump the chippings at my place.

Plant anything that will grow and let it go mad as green manure / cover crop; cut it all down when it's as big as it'll get and let it rot into the soil.

Dig ditches on contour to manage water flow and pile up mounds of soil, also on contour for that water to soak into. Maybe even do a hugelkultur mound if you've got old logs/tree branches around (these both work to trap moisture where it's hot and dry, or to manage water where you have too much). Check out Charles Dowding, Paul Gautschi and Back to Reality

Growing anything in my soggy, windy, half shaded and cold garden is a battle but I'm slowly getting there. You can too. Do this for at least 3 years and you'll start to see a real difference in the soil.

Have a good Christmas!
Thanks for the reply, i had put down cardboard and mulch earlier this year and mixed in some better soil with the terrible stuff i have and it has made SOME difference but i just want results and i want them today.... please....

Ups and downs of learning....
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Old December 26, 2020   #7
rxkeith
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there is the possibility of raised beds. a smaller area with really good soil might
out produce a larger area with crappy soil. you can't fix everything at once in some
cases. its like fixing up an old house. what needs to be done first, then go on from there. compost is almost always good. if you can get manure of some type, like
horse, cow, goat, rabbit, sheep, or chicken manure, that will give the garden a jolt.
chicken manure should not be used fresh. its too hot. what i did this past garden season, was i dumped chicken manure in between my squash rows, just piled up.
rains, and watering slowly leached nutrients into the soil, and the squash did really well. other wise coop dumping go in the garden during the end of season, and are worked
in the following spring. whatever grows in those parts of the garden are really happy.






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Old December 26, 2020   #8
zendog
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I'm a huge believer in no-till with cover crops then mulching over to improve the soil and build fertility.

In the fall of 2019 I converted a section of my lawn, that was fairly poor clay beneath, over to a veggie and flower bed. I stripped off the turf, loosened up the soil and seeded heavily with a cover crop of hairy vetch, crimson clover and Austrian winter peas to fix nitrogen and build organic matter, plus daikon radish to scavenge nutrients from below and break up the clay. It grew slowly through the winter, then took off in the early spring and I cut it all down while it was flowering in early spring before it would self-seed. I just cut it down and dropped it in place, then mulched over the top with some wood chips which are free from the county tree trimming work. The cover crops had pretty much decomposed completely in a couple of weeks under the wood chips and I was off to the races with planting. There was no tilling, no turning the soil, etc. When I did pull up a few roots from the peas and vetch to inspect them I could see plenty of nice nitrogen nodules, so I knew right away the soil would be richer.

By mid summer this past year my flowers and veggies in that area were about twice the size and twice as productive as a neighboring bed that had never had cover crops and was converted a year earlier with sheet mulching and other expensive amendments turned in, etc. At the end of the season I put in a shovel to turn one spade full from my new section to compare it to a section from a neighboring section of what was still lawn and the soil from the cover crops and mulching was much looser, clearly had more organic matter and just looked better.

There are many ways to improve soil, but I have to say I've found cover cropping and mulching over to be the easiest.
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Old December 27, 2020   #9
Master Shake
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Thanks again guys.
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Old December 29, 2020   #10
Milan HP
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Chicken manure (I normally call it otherwise) is a really fast and efficient fertilizer. But it has to be used with discretion as it is far too strong in itself. The recommended procedure is fermentation. Half a bucket or less of ch.s. and the rest water. Cover the bucket with a lid and leave it for at least two weeks. Stir from time to time. It's not ready after that yet. It needs to be substantially diluted with water and the ratio is 1 : 10. Only then you can water your plants with it. That's about nutrients.
There's the other aspect: the structure of the soil. Apart from adding an enormous amount of compost or biomass, it's a long distance run. Old mature manure could also be used, but it could overfertilize the soil.


Milan HP

Last edited by Milan HP; December 29, 2020 at 11:34 AM.
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Old February 17, 2021   #11
Shapshftr
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Have you tried greensand? It's supposed to be an excellent soil conditioner as well as organic fertilizer. It's loaded with minerals and helps sandy soils retain water. Here's an article on it.

https://morningchores.com/greensand/
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Old February 17, 2021   #12
Master Shake
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shapshftr View Post
Have you tried greensand? It's supposed to be an excellent soil conditioner as well as organic fertilizer. It's loaded with minerals and helps sandy soils retain water. Here's an article on it.

https://morningchores.com/greensand/
I have not but thanks for the information.... will see if i can find any
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Old February 25, 2021   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Master Shake View Post
I have not but thanks for the information.... will see if i can find any
You're welcome. Maybe try searching for the scientific name, glauconite, if you have trouble finding it in your area.
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