The Different Types Of Soil In The Garden

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The different types of soil

Any good gardening guide will tell you what kind of soil is desirable for which type of plant. And for good reason, the soil is the basic element of the crop, it is mainly him who will decide the good growth (or not) of your plants. It is therefore essential to know him well, to be able to play and use his different characteristics. To know more, let's do a tour of the field.

First of all, it should be known that the soil is composed mainly of four elements, namely clay, sand, limestone and humus. The clay will make a compact soil, while the sand will give it a certain lightness. For its part, limestone will bring calcium to the soil, while humus will enrich it with organic matter.

A clay earth

The clayey earth, formed of small particles, is very compact. This density makes it unsuitable for the circulation of air, water, and the propagation of roots in the soil. It tends to keep freshness and humidity.
Changing in mood over time, it is hard, dry and spinning in hot weather, but becomes soft and sticky in wet weather. Moreover, being very quickly saturated with water, such a land will be appropriate to the formation of puddles.

All of these characteristics make it a hard land to work. It is nevertheless possible to improve it by bringing sand and compost. It takes time, but the results are then largely up to the patience put to the test. The clay soil can indeed become a real vegetable paradise.

Recognize it: an appearance in clumps, and a sticky texture to the touch in wet weather are the signs revealing a clayey earth. The presence of dandelions is also an indicator of such a type of land.

A limestone land

The advantage of this type of land is that it is easy to work. A limestone soil effectively drains the soil, perhaps even a little too zealously, the nutrients may be washed away.
To make the most of this land, it is best to beak in the spring, and protect it with green fertilizers like ground cover.

Recognize it: a limestone earth is light in color, it is dry and friable. The wild carrot shoot indicates dry calcareous soil, while the presence of adonis or poppy will rather indicate a limestone soil rich in humus.

A sandy land

The sandy land is to the clay soil what the Ying is to Yang. In fact the sandy earth is composed of large particles, which makes it a light earth and retaining only very little water. Since water is the place where dissolved nutrients are found, too sandy soil is not desirable. Fortunately, it is always possible to improve it by enriching it in potting soil, and covering it with a mulch to help retain the water. It will then be perfectly adapted to early harvests.
The sandy soil is preferably burrowed in the spring.

Recognize it: the sandy earth is often light in color, forms small particles, and flows between the fingers when we take a handle in the hand.

Siliceous earth

The siliceous earth is very poor in limestone, and may dry out as quickly as it cools.
It is a land that requires a contribution of limestone, through lime for example, otherwise it will remain very unfavorable to the culture.

Recognize it: it is a land that is found mainly in the rocky areas of Brittany or the Massif Central.

A peaty land

A peatland has the characteristics of being acidic, rich in organic matter and yet poor in nutrients. A peaty soil is a real giant sponge in winter, the peat absorbing water this season to restore it in summer.
This land can be worked in any weather, needs to become cultivable lime intake.

Recognize it: the peaty earth is recognizable by its black color, and its spongy texture to the touch.

A humus (or silty) land

It is a rather lumpy land, close to the clay soil but nevertheless more nutritious than the latter. Packing very quickly in wet weather, it is best to avoid as much as possible to walk on it so as not to pack it too much.

Recognize it: the humus soils are dark in color, they are generally soft to the touch, although sticky in wet weather.

As you can see, each type of land has its advantages and disadvantages. The goal of the game is to work these lands to make a balanced soil between clay, sand, limestone and humus.A land endowed with such a balance is called free land.

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Video: Understanding Soil Types and Soil Texture (test your own soil).

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