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Behnke Design and Landscape Tip – Soil and Planting Bed Preparation

soilSoil and Planting Bed Preparation

You may be one of the few fortunate homeowners that already has a loamy, well-drained soil, but for the rest of us it is necessary to add soil amendments to assure your new plants have the right growing conditions. A “soil amendment” is an organic material such as Leafgro or compost that, when incorporated into existing soil, improves the soil structure as it decays.

Why go through the extra time, expense, and labor it takes to properly prepare the soil?

Plant roots must have air and water to properly grow. Amending any existing soil with organic matter is the best way to help achieve this. In heavy clay soils the organic matter will separate the clay particles to allow for improved drainage while with sandy conditions, organics help retain water, reducing the chance of roots drying out.

Other factors such as: soil pH (acidity/alkalinity); proper starter fertilizer; the percent root-to-top ratio of the transplant; and uniform watering during the critical “three day after planting” period are also important factors but your soil condition is the first factor that must be corrected.

Properly preparing a planting bed or planting hole can be a tough task easily skipped by another less-experienced landscape service. Fortunately for our clients, Behnke’s experienced Landscape crews are well-prepared to meet the challenge.

Dirt is what’s on the bottom of your shoes. Soil is for planting.

By Bill Mann

Stephanie Fleming was raised at Behnke’s Nurseries in Beltsville. Her Mom, Sonja, was one of Albert & Rose Behnke’s four children. She was weeding from the moment she could walk and hiding as soon as she was old enough to run, so many weeds, so little time. Although she quickly learned how to pull out a perennial and get taken off of weed pulling duty.

This Post Has 3 Comments

  1. To revive an old flower garden can I use the Jolly Gardener top soil that BS Troop 1033 is selling in their fundraiser?

    1. Hi Joy,

      Yes you sure can. If you can turn it into the soil a few inches deep, that would be a great soil amendment.

      Larry B

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