Soil Amendments

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  1. How to Enrich Soil Before Plantation/Sowing
  2. Applied Weed Killer to Garden
  3. Wood Ash from Wood Burner
  4. Wood Ash in Gardening
  5. Amendments for Vegetable Garden
  6. Amending Soil
  7. Clay Soil
Asked by vilas saner on December 18, 2010
How to Enrich Soil Before Plantation/Sowing

What are some tips for enrichment of soil?

TX Master Gardner

First thing I would suggest is get a soil test, otherwise you are shooting in the dark. Depending on where you live, most states have a very low cost sampling program. Without knowing what type of soil, PH, Acidity level, sodium level, etc. you would be guessing.

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Asked by Anonymous on February 5, 2011
Applied Weed Killer to Garden

I applied weed killer to my 1200 sq. ft. garden in December. I did not till in the fall, as I was waiting for the spring before planning to till. My soil needs to be amended. I live in SC (in the piedmont) and we have a lot of white clay. I am having 6 cubic yards of compost mix delivered, which will have about 1/3 mushroom compost. Can I till at the end of February and then apply the mulch on top?

ANSWERS
CaptainAng

The answer in short? Yes.
But why till? Save time, money and backache...try lasagna gardening. Once you do, you'll never touch a tiller again!
Just take a look at this site...it is so easy and kinda fun too! Oh yeah, and the best veggies you ever tasted!
http://www.motherearthnews.com/organic-gardening/lasagna-gardening-zmaz99amztak.aspx
The mushroom compost will be an exellent addition! For a nitrogen boost, I've always added some alfalfa to my 'recipe'. Look for it at any feed supply store. I used a 50lb bag on a 1000 sq ft garden.
If you have any more questions, feel free to ask~
Happy gardening!

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Asked by Anonymous on February 12, 2011
Wood Ash From Wood Burner

Can I put wood ash straight onto my garden before ‘weathering’ it? Is there any fear of ripening plants too early with wood ash?

ANSWERS
Nikki
Certified GKH Gardening Expert

I would not put too much wood ash directly onto the garden. Small amounts are ok, but too much will "burn" the ground. When wood ash gets wet, it leeches off lye. Lye is caustic and too much will kill the plants. I would add the wood ash to a compost pile to mature it a bit and let the lye mellow a bit.
But, if it is only a few shovels full and spread over a wide area, that will be fine.

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Asked by Anonymous on March 4, 2011
Wood Ash in Gardening

How may I use the ash from my wood stove in gardening? Is it good for blueberries, vegetables, or any particular plants?

ANSWERS
Nikki
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
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Asked by Anonymous on March 19, 2011
Amendments for Vegetable Garden

We have a community garden with 750 sq. ft. of garden beds. Our soil analysis shows a pH of 7. 8, which we’d like to correct. Also, the soil is very low in nitrogen and phosphorous. We are thinking about using powdered sulfur for the pH, blood meal for the nitrogen, and bone meal for the phosphorous.

Please advise if it is wise to use all three at one time, how much to use, and when to apply.

ANSWERS
Nikki
Certified GKH Gardening Expert

Sulfur is good for the pH. This article has a few other ways you can consider for lowering the pH:
https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/garden-how-to/soil-fertilizers/raise-acid-level-soil.htm

Bone and blood meal are great, but just realize that the nutrients in them are not immediately available in the soil after applying. It takes some time for them to break down. Composted manure can get the nitrogen in the soil very quickly and will also help plants with taking up phosphorus already in the soil. I would make sure to use a bit of the composted manure with the blood and bone meal to get good balance and timing.

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Asked by Anonymous on April 1, 2011
Amending Soil

I have very sandy soil, formerly pine barrens on Long Island. What is the best way to build up the soil fast?

ANSWERS
Nikki
Certified GKH Gardening Expert

Adding compost is the quickest way to amend the soil. This article will help you: https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/garden-how-to/soil-fertilizers/amending-sandy-soil.htm

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Asked by Anonymous on April 3, 2011
Clay Soil

We had to have a new water line put in and where it was dug up (partial yard and sidewalk was taken up), it was all clay. It is so thick I could start making my own clay pots! What can we do to amend the soil? It is hard to even try to shovel out, and we don’t know what to do with it once we are able to dig it out.

ANSWERS
Nikki
Certified GKH Gardening Expert

This article will help with amending the clay soil:
https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/garden-how-to/soil-fertilizers/how-to-improve-clay-soil.htm

You would probably find lasagna gardening helpful in amending the very heavy soil: http://web.extension.illinois.edu/coles/yg/060309.html

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