Top­soil vs. gar­den soil - is there a dif­fer­ence?

Ontario Gardener Magazine - - LOCAL DIRT - By Ryan Becker

It’s the time of year to start think­ing about what you’ll be do­ing in your gar­den, and how to make sure your lawn is pic­ture per­fect. The best way to get the great­est re­sults is to use the best soil. Have you ever won­dered what the dif­fer­ence is be­tween top­soil and black gar­den soil?

Con­trary to what you might have heard, there is a huge dif­fer­ence in qual­ity when you get right down to it.

Take no­tice the next time you see a new sub­di­vi­sion go­ing in. All that soil be­ing re­moved from the area to make way for the new houses con­sti­tutes most of the top­soil that is avail­able to the pub­lic for pur­chase. It’s left­overs from these new sub­di­vi­sions.

You might be shrug­ging your shoul­ders right now and say­ing to your­self, “OK, but so what? What dif­fer­ence does it make?”

After all, “soil is soil.” Well, you may be sur­prised to know there is a very big dif­fer­ence!

Let’s ex­am­ine the dif­fer­ences in­di­vid­u­ally:

Top­soil: It’s ex­actly what the name im­plies, soil that is sim­ply stripped from the top layer of the earth. Top­soil ex­erts risk to the grow­ing qual­ity due to the pos­si­ble in­clu­sion of chem­i­cals and de­bris that you may not want in your gar­den. Not to men­tion that it may not have the nu­tri­tional value that you de­sire for your plants. It may not even have com­post or or­ganic mat­ter, es­sen­tially mak­ing it dead weight. It’s im­por­tant to re­mem­ber, top­soil was never in­tended for gar­den use!

Gar­den soil: Gar­den soil is ex­actly what its name im­plies as well, it is soil prop­erly and sci­en­tif­i­cally for­mu­lated for your gar­den to hold nu­tri­tional value that al­lows for proper, qual­ity plant growth! It’s a mix­ture of or­ganic in­gre­di­ents es­sen­tial to pro­mote mi­cro­bial ac­tiv­ity. Think pro­bi­otics for your soil, which is per­fect for let­ting your flow­ers and veg­eta­bles grow, and grow better! You’ll not only feel the dif­fer­ence in gar­den soil, but most im­por­tantly, you’ll see the dif­fer­ence.

Doesn’t your soil in­put de­serve the same amount of at­ten­tion to de­tail and com­mit­ment that you put into your flow­ers and veg­eta­bles? After all, qual­ity flow­ers and veg­eta­bles are the direct re­sult of qual­ity soil. Sim­ply work the de­sired amount of rich, loamy, gar­den soil into your na­tive soil, to about three to four inches in depth, add your plants and/or veg­eta­bles, wa­ter as needed, and voilà — you’re on your way to more boun­ti­ful flow­ers and big­ger veg­eta­bles yields.

Gar­den soil will sig­nif­i­cantly im­prove your gar­den­ing suc­cess, com­pared to top­soil, which re­quires con­stant at­ten­tion and added nu­tri­ents.

So go on, and add black gar­den soil to your gar­den, and en­joy gar­den­ing!

The qual­ity dif­fer­ence in your flow­ers and veg­eta­bles is in the soil!

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