To establish a healthy yard it is crucial to know your soil type. No matter how much work you do in your yard and garden, all that careful sowing, weeding and tending could be in vain if the plants you purchase are not suitable for the soil. Every yard has its own mixture of minerals, organic and inorganic matter. This mixture largely determines what plants, shrubs or trees can be grown successfully. There are six basic types of soil.
There are plants for every type of soil. Good plant labels will give information about the type of soil that a plant requires. Native plants are adapted to the local soil. In normal circumstances there is no need to amend the soil, you just have to understand the type of soil you have and plant accordingly. Soil amendments are only necessary if your soil is very compacted, contains toxins, or if you have soil that has been very deplenished. Before you start amending the soil we advise you to get a soil test. This is not expensive and it will give you a better idea of what to plant. Soil has also gained some attention as a way to store carbon and mitigate some of the effects of climate change. To do this it is important to add organic material, which is carbon rich, to the soil. Added organic material will enhance the soil structure and will stimulate growth not only of plants but all types of organisms. The best organic material to add is compost, made from leaves or kitchen scraps. But a natural layer of fallen leaves also creates humus.