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Black Dirt from Compost Site


LawnSite Member
St. Cloud, MN

I am in the process of "possibly" purchasing a 4 acre lot to build a house on. Unfortunately there is not a lot of black dirt on the site. It is a very sandy soil, so i believe that i would probably have to bring in some dirt for the area within the lot that we'd like a lawn.

Realizing that black dirt is fairly expensive, i was wondering about some "black dirt" that is available at our local compost site. Not knowing much about dirt, it "looks" like it would do the job, but need some of your opinions.

It is a grass/leaf/etc compost w/ no trees, limbs, etc. and has been screened. And by the way...it's FREE! I would just have to do all the loading an hauling myself.

Wondering if this dirt would work for a lawn or would it be a lot of work for nothing.

Thanks for any input you might have.


Critical Care

LawnSite Bronze Member
Central Oregon
Wow, I wish that the compost here was free, but they get you coming and going.

I would think that you would be safe in using it. Most bad things such as weed seeds tend to break down during the composition process because of the high temperatures that are created. It’s likely that most weed seeds are resident within your existing sandy soil. That compost probably has shredded woody matter, which generally is perfectly fine as it offers carbon material in addition to nitrogen.

Sandy soil typically isn’t very fertile, so this compost would help provide a bit of needed organic matter.


LawnSite Member
St. Cloud, MN
Thanks Critical Care for the info.

Yeah it's nice that it's free...at least for now. We just pay a $25 yrly fee and we can dump or take what we want.

Thanks again for your response.