View Full Version : top soil

03-20-2003, 11:14 PM
what is top soil?
What are the desirable qualities of good topsoil?

03-20-2003, 11:42 PM
The blacker, the better.

03-20-2003, 11:43 PM
That is a very good question. I'm hoping that you will answer that. From reading your posts and seeing your credentials, I am assuming you are one of the most qualified to explain.
Here in Missouri we have a lot of clay. During most landscaping jobs I will add topsoil to the new beds. Some customers prefer the pulverized top soil which cost almost twice as much.

Mike Bradbury
03-21-2003, 01:57 AM
Originally posted by timturf
what is top soil?
What are the desirable qualities of good topsoil?

in soil science and you're asking US ?:eek:

The blackest dirt around here is muck with very little fertility. Sure looks nice though.
I would say nice tilth and a decent amount of OM. Not the fluffy light stuff used in flower beds.

(is this a test?)

03-21-2003, 10:27 AM
Hopefully a learning experience!

03-22-2003, 08:21 AM
A good topsoil? for what? turf, shrubs, perrenials, I would say a sandy loam for all the above, but sometimes and often you must work with the existing soil and amend to improve fert. and drainage

03-22-2003, 08:56 AM
navy man

Just trying to get a good defination on top soil, and what It would consist of.

To many people throwing the word top soil around. What is top soil.

What is topsoil?
What are the desirable qualities of good topsoil!

03-22-2003, 10:51 AM
It's the "top" layer, if you will, of earth. Usually it consists of dead and decomposed plant and animal matter.

How'd I do, Teach!?

03-23-2003, 01:21 PM
Top soil is as last stated the top layer. Also called loam. Screened is a better choice to get, as it creates less work because rocks, stones, and sticks are removed in the screening process. Normal application is 2"- 3". Another option is farm loam. This loam is usually very full of nutrients due to fertilizers and "natural" fertilizers from farm animals. Anything that grows from seed such as grass seed will due much better in loan/top soil than it will in natural soil like clay or sand. Hope this helps.

03-23-2003, 01:32 PM
Be careful applying soil over existing soil,if it is different! 2-3 inches creates a layer, then water doen't move thru easily!

Incorporate the two soils! roto till

what is topsoil?
what are the desirable qualities of a good topsoi?

we are getting their!!

03-23-2003, 06:58 PM
Topsoil on a site is generally considered the top 4" that sustain vegetative growth. "Farm grade topsoil" generally is the soil alone w/ out the vegetation of course that is suitable for new plants. The biggest concern w/ any soil is making sure that when planting or amending soil w/ any type of amendment that you're not creating a problem w/ nitrogen fixation. You want the plant materials to still be accessible to all the micro and macronutrients in the soil. Also, the soil shouldn't be too compacted so the root systems cant take up water, nor too loose that water runs away from root systems too quickly.

Did I BS my way thru this essay good enough professor??

03-23-2003, 09:38 PM
What do you think

03-23-2003, 09:42 PM
Originally posted by timturf
What do you think

You're the one w/ the BS in Plant & Soil Science!
What's my grade?? I'll accept C+ or better - after all I didn't have to think too hard about it!

03-23-2003, 10:48 PM
but you stated you where BS, so ok, c+ if it makes you happy

Lets keep it simple