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View Full Version : Crazy idea to add top soil


nwjt
02-25-2009, 10:29 PM
My front yard is hard clay. I have an idea, what do you think of it?

I would aireate the yard well. Then I would buy bags of topsoil and mix it with with water so it is fairly runny (not just muddy, but liquidy). Then pour that over the soil to get it down into the holes.


Would be some work but it seems like a good idea, would it work? I would have to do it several times.

Or would just pouring sand over the top be better and easier?

Thanks!

tombo82685
02-25-2009, 10:48 PM
My front yard is hard clay. I have an idea, what do you think of it?

I would aireate the yard well. Then I would buy bags of topsoil and mix it with with water so it is fairly runny (not just muddy, but liquidy). Then pour that over the soil to get it down into the holes.


Would be some work but it seems like a good idea, would it work? I would have to do it several times.

Or would just pouring sand over the top be better and easier?

Thanks!
What are your trying to do?
If your trying to alter your soil properties getting away from clay to help with drainage. You can aerate by pulling the cores or solid tinning then top dress a 70/30, 80/20 mix of sand and like a mushroom soil and spread it over the lawn to incorporate into the lawn. You can also rent a dry ject which aerates and then injects sand into the profile.

nwjt
02-25-2009, 11:31 PM
So sand is the way to go? I am pretty new at this but I always thought topsoil was the best for grass.

My soil compacts easy, dries fast, the water won't penatrate very well, and the weeds run rampant.

tombo82685
02-26-2009, 07:56 AM
So sand is the way to go? I am pretty new at this but I always thought topsoil was the best for grass.

My soil compacts easy, dries fast, the water won't penatrate very well, and the weeds run rampant.

What is your goal to accomplish in your yard? If you want better infiltration do sand, but not straight sand, like a 70/30 or 80/20 mixture with soil or organic matt

cmlandscapeconstruction
02-26-2009, 09:54 AM
i would collect a soil sample, have it analyzed, and use those results as your baseline,to make appropriate soil ammendments. keep in mind that your locaton,which i did not see listed, plays a vital role in what material to use.check with your local cooperative extension

Smallaxe
02-26-2009, 12:03 PM
Sand and compost mix is best for clay. That will become your topsoil.

Topsoil is 45% clay, 45% sand, 10% silt/organic matter.

When you add topsoil to your clay you are adding more clay which you do not want.

tombo82685
02-26-2009, 12:56 PM
you could also just aerate pulling the cores and leave the holes open. Then whatever material falls in their ex grass clippings or leaves it will be broken down by the microbes and becomes top soil

nwjt
02-26-2009, 02:27 PM
I live in eastern Nebraska, Zone 5 I think. In my front yard, the dirt is hard, grey. It is hell to dig into, and cracks when dry. Water runs off the top. Grass clippings do not decay, but rather just form a layer that stops new grass, but not sedge. (but then again sedge comes up through the landscaping plastic and 2 tons of rock).

So it seems that the correct solution would be to:
Aireate
Mix compost and "sand" at 80/20 (which kind)
spread that into the lawn and into the holes.

My neighbors grass is fiarly good, but then again he waters a lot, fertilizes a LOT, and for all his work its not THAT good. He gets dead spots out of nowhere and the grass looks faded. From my understanding, the soil is too much clay.

Would I gain anything by "liquifying" the sand/compost mixture and pouring that on the lawn into the core holes?

My goal is to build a good foundation for a good lawn and not have to make it survive off chemicles and herbicides.

treegal1
02-26-2009, 04:41 PM
just add compost!!!!!!! its that easy, just spread it out dry and water it in later when it rains. don't hurt your self, here watch this.........


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=08vqQX9gCDo

tombo82685
02-26-2009, 05:01 PM
just add compost!!!!!!! its that easy, just spread it out dry and water it in later when it rains. don't hurt your self, here watch this.........


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=08vqQX9gCDo

a mix of compost and sand would be best. You would get the proper nutrients in the compost and you would get the infiltration with the sand. You would want to aerify pulling the cores. You cant just throw it on top of the soil or you will get layering in you profile which isnt good, you want a nice even distribution that gradually settles into one profile to another.

treegal1
02-26-2009, 05:45 PM
sand and clay= terra cotta??

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pedogenesis

layers?? like this???

http://www.geography.hunter.cuny.edu/~tbw/ncc/chap4.wc/soils/soil.profiles.jpg

http://cmg.colostate.edu/gardennotes/213.pdf

tombo82685
02-26-2009, 06:50 PM
No im not talking horizons of a soil profile like that picture shows. Im talking about layering within the top top O or Ahorizon. This is more of what im talking about http://www.oznet.ksu.edu/hfrr/turf/black%20layer%20in%20plug%20taken%20from%20green.jpg. This happens frequently in golf course greens do to top dressing. Layering like this is bad because in some layers the water movement moves quickly through, while in other layers water movement is impeded. This then leads to rooting problems of a plant and ties up nutrients.