Im­prove your soil

Or­ganic so­lu­tions to help con­di­tion your soil

Garden News (UK) - - About Now -

Feed­ing the soil keeps it nu­tri­en­trich and healthy, and lots of nat­u­ral soil im­provers are avail­able to or­ganic gar­den­ers. Spread them over the soil sur­face this au­tumn and they’ll re­plen­ish lost nu­tri­ents as they break down over win­ter. Then dig them in come spring to help im­prove struc­ture.

● Gar­den com­post: Mix grass clip­pings, chopped herba­ceous prun­ings, an­nual weeds and kitchen waste to­gether with straw or strips of card­board or news­pa­per and leave to rot down for a free source of bal­anced, loamy com­post.

● Well-rot­ted ma­nure: Farm­yard ma­nure is avail­able free or at low cost from sta­bles and farms. Leave fresh ma­nure to de­com­pose be­fore spread­ing over your beds. Avoid us­ing in plots des­tined to grow car­rots, which can fork in over-rich soils.

● Chicken ma­nure: Add fresh poul­try drop­pings to your com­post bin to en­rich your home-made com­post or al­low them to rot down be­fore adding to your soil. Don’t use around er­i­ca­ceous plants.

● Leaf mould: Fallen leaves that were col­lected and bagged up last au­tumn will have rot­ted down into rich, crumbly leaf mould.

● Mush­room com­post: Spent grow­ing medium from mush­rooms is a good source of or­ganic mat­ter and of­ten avail­able in bulk, but you might need to ar­range trans­port. Un­suit­able for er­i­ca­ceous plants.

A la m y

Use bagged up leaf mould on bor­ders now

Lovely loamy com­post make for the health­i­est of soils

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