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Soil Improvement Video

Here at Blue Diamond, we recognise that healthy soil equals healthy plants.  Healthy plants are better at fighting pests and disease which means a reduced need for chemicals.

Why have healthy soil

What goes on beneath the ground has a huge impact on the outcome of our garden.
Each plant has its own unique requirements however most gardens will flourish if the soil structure and nutrient content are improved. Here are a few ideas to help improve your soil.

Improving soil structure

Sandy soils are often low in nutrients and drain fast.  Use organic matter to improve soil structure and provide nutrients. You could use manure or compost. Mulching helps suppress weeds and leaves the soil structure beneath undisturbed.  Clay soils, although usually nutrient rich, usually suffer from compaction.  Here you could use clay breaker, dig in peat free compost or sand. 

Soil nutrients and pH

It is also vital to have the right nutrients for plants. Doing a test first will help determine your soil acidity and nutrient content of your soil. (pH tests)

Use ericaceous compost and feed for acid loving plants such as rhododendrons and azaleas.

If nutrients in your soil are low you can enrich with an organic fertiliser. Nitrogen is often in short supply so you could apply fish blood and bone or even grow plants that fix nitrogen such as legumes. It is best to apply Nitrogen-enriching products to the soil just before planting/sowing seeds to prevent leaching. A split application pre-planting and when the plants are established to give a nutrient boost is also recommended.

You could sow green manure such as buckwheat, fenugreek or winter field bean). Dig this into the soil before flowering to act as organic fertiliser.

Greener products and peat free

To get rid of any weeds that may try to compete with your plants, greener weed killers are available such as grow greener weedkiller with natural active ingredients.

When mulching or planting, always try to use peat free compost. Peat does not hold nutritional value itself and therefore more nutrient efficient, peat free alternatives are the better choice. Peat’s ability to hold nutrients and water can be replicated with improving soil structure with green manures, wood chip and mulches.

Peat based composts deplete peat bogs which are an environment for wildlife.  In the past few years great progress has been made in developing peat-free products. Peat Free compost and soil-enrichers are an organic and nature friendly way to keep your plants healthy.

Look out for composted bark, coir, wood fibre and green waste, all can be used as alternatives to peat.  Blue Diamond are aiming to be peat free by 2025, hopefully, sooner.

If you have a good soil structure, full of nutrients, you are well on your way to success.

Using organic and greener products benefits the soil, wildlife and plants and is all round a better approach for a cleaner future.