stan da man
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Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2014 6:28 pm
Location: PINEBLUFF NC

GARDEN SOIL

hi everybody - i`m new here moved 6 months ago from N.Y. - come march i want to start with the garden and my raised beds - does anyone know the best way to get this sandy soil better - should i add cow manure [ horse ] - of course i`m gonna get top soil - and i`m making a compost now - please tell me what you think and if you had the same problem -- THANKS

imafan26
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Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: GARDEN SOIL

Add compost, it will improve the water holding capacity. You are lucky your soil is sandy, it will drain well. I would also get a soil test to see what else you need to add before planting.
Your soil test are a lot cheaper than mine.
You probably have a Cecil soil that is prevalent in NC. It is well drained and moderately permeable.
The North Carolina extention service offers a soil testing service and I found this planting calendar for Central North Carolina. I have no idea where you are but it is a start.
https://content.ces.ncsu.edu/central-nor ... -herbs.pdf
https://www.ncagr.gov/agronomi/sthome.htm
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

stan da man
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Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2014 6:28 pm
Location: PINEBLUFF NC

Re: GARDEN SOIL

i would like to thank you for those maps yes i am in central nc - thanks again !!!!

Bobberman
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Re: GARDEN SOIL

Vine crops seem to prefer sandy soil! I would say leaves ground up. They even sale ground up corn cobs which I am trying now and think it will help most soil. Tractor supply has them! Strain some of the soil and see what kind of rocks are in it. Strain it to make it finer so it compacts better but do not add cement!
I enjoy fishing ,gardening and a solar greenhouse! carpet installation repair and sales for over 45 years! I am the inventor of the Bobber With A Brain - Fishing Bobber!

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feldon30
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Re: GARDEN SOIL

stan da man wrote:hi everybody - i`m new here moved 6 months ago from N.Y. - come march i want to start with the garden and my raised beds - does anyone know the best way to get this sandy soil better - should i add cow manure [ horse ] - of course i`m gonna get top soil - and i`m making a compost now - please tell me what you think and if you had the same problem -- THANKS
There is no accepted standard for "Top soil". Dirt can be scraped off a vacant lot and called top soil. I generally avoid it.
The Unconventional Tomato -- Comprehensive Seed Starting Guide, Garden Photos, and more!

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jal_ut
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Location: Northern Utah Zone 5

Re: GARDEN SOIL

Soil, or top soil, is that thin layer of fine particles that covers the earth. It can vary a lot in its composure, from sand to rich loamy soils. Soil is generally a mix of sand, silt, clay and organic matter teeming with microbes.

If you just go out in the back yard and scrape up a bucketful of whatever is there and toss in a handful of NPK fertilizer, it will grow crops.

NPK: Nitrogen Phosphorous and Potassium, the three most needed elements in soil and often lacking. This is why fertilizers were developed.

Yes, manure is a great fertilizer, however it is best to apply it in the fall and work it in so the microbes will work on it and break it down so the elements will be available to the plants come spring.
Gardening at 5000 feet elevation, zone 4/5 Northern Utah, Frost free from May 25 to September 8 +/-

Bobberman
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Location: Latrobe Pa.

Re: GARDEN SOIL

Very nice list of potting seed starting mixes. Thanks!
I notices severa mixes l say top soil or garden soil and also white sand. I like white sand since it reflects light to the under leaves as does perlite! What I use is strained garden soil that I take below the first 6 inches of top soil so it has less weeds. I strain it and mix it with composted cow manure of composted mushroom manure that I buy at agway! It seems to work great except for a few weeds that I pull! I think sea weed liquid diluted with water works also! I also add some play sand but strain everything! When I plan the seeds I strain the top inch above the seeds with a finer strainer! I cover the seed box with a glass window till the seeds emerge and even leave it covered for a week after in some cases!

I plant in all kind of containers that are at least 4 inches deep. My main boxes that I have used for 5 years now are Styrofoam grape boxes that I cannot find any more and they are the best! I place the box inside a white garbage bag that makes it very free of germs! I punch a few holes in the bags at the bottom for drainage. I have already starts some cole crops and lettuce for the coming year in my solar greenhouse! I am experimenting with ground corn cobs mixed in some of the mixes. They sell big bags of ground cobs at Rural King for less than $5! I also like the pine shavings in big bags! The pine shavings are a great mulch and a cover over muddy sections!
I enjoy fishing ,gardening and a solar greenhouse! carpet installation repair and sales for over 45 years! I am the inventor of the Bobber With A Brain - Fishing Bobber!

imafan26
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Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: GARDEN SOIL

It sounds like your native soil is pretty good for agriculture, and that state has a diverse and large agricultural sector. You might ask your local extension service what they recommend to add to your soil. But it looks like small grains, corn, beans, cucumber,sweet potatoes, strawberries, peanuts, tomatoes are all grown commercially, so you should be able to do a lot with your soil. Organic matter will probably help a lot. It will take time, but it will get better. It is actually probably easier than starting with heavy clay. If you have time you can plant a cover crop to add biomass or a legume to add both biomass and nitrogen. Your growing season is between 130-270 depending if you live in the mountains or near the coast.
If you have the shorter growing season, then you will need to start tomatoes indoors, but if you have a long season, you should be able to get a good harvest before the cold sets in.

https://www.agclassroom.org/kids/stats/northcarolina.pdf
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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