Gardening 101: Understanding Your Soil

Have you ever considered the texture of your soil? Do you know if it tends towards sandy, or is it heavy with clay? Jonathan recommends undertaking a simple soil texture test in order to understand the make up of your soil before choosing a final garden location. All you’ll need is a jar and some time.

Start by half filling your jar with soil (use soil from about the top six inches), then top it up with water, and finally start shaking. Get that soil all mixed up and then let it sit undisturbed for a few hours. What you should end up with is three well defined sections of sedimentation, each of which indicates the different percentages of sand, silt, and clay present in your soil. Once you know the rough makeup of your soil you’ll be able to determine what types of amendments might be needed to provide your plants with ideal growing conditions.

In this video Jonathan will take you through the steps to perform your own soil texture test and then help you analyse the results.

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