Help; new to landscaping

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by chambers 38, Apr 6, 2005.

  1. chambers 38

    chambers 38 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 104

    So I’m starting to do some small landscaping jobs for my lawn matenance customer’s that I have.
    I just have a simple question for preparing a new flower and hedge bed for a customer.
    I know there many deferent requirements for certain flowers and hedge’s but I was wondering if there was just one basic soil to add to the pre-existing soil, one that is just a good idea to have in there for just about anything you install in the bed??

    I was thinking of adding topsoil and rototilling it in to the pre-existing soil to make a good bed for new plants and hedge’s????

    Please help
    Thanks Gil
  2. drsogr

    drsogr LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,275

    I would suggest mixing in top soil..and then fertilzing. Maybe a little peat moss. There are so many different soil types out there now its unreal. It amazes me people pay $10 for a bag of dirt!
  3. TerraVenture

    TerraVenture LawnSite Member
    Messages: 144

    I would pull a soil test and send it to your state university soils lab. If you don't have a state university find a lab that can do a full soils analysis for the best information. I send my to the university of nh and they have an analysis back to me in a day or two for $20.
  4. DaLLa$

    DaLLa$ LawnSite Member
    Messages: 22

    We add compost
  5. sheshovel

    sheshovel LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,112

    Compost but well aged and weedless.I like mushroom compost but when it's fresh(less than a year exposed to the elements)it can have alot of built up salts and burn roots.So I try to make sure it's the older stuff.Also I like a bagged product for small spaces or to add to a mix I use..1/4yd-topsoil-1/4yd-nitro humus-1/4yd mush comp and mix in 3 bags of Gardners Bloom Organic compost with it all mixed up and tilled or double dug into the existing soil.Yd rates can go up per amnt of area your doing.I never miss with this mix.
  6. larz

    larz LawnSite Member
    Messages: 46

    Keep it simple> most nurserys Or even Home Depot have a "landscape mix". add 2-3" and till. Specialty plants may require additional additives. Azealias appreciate a peat trench, some ornamentals appreciate some sand, lime or nitro. Know your plants, but "landscape mix" is pretty comon.
  7. KurtisInIowa

    KurtisInIowa LawnSite Member
    Messages: 60

    I general, just add some good topsoil and peat moss. Then, depending upon the plants in the bed, go from there. Evergreens, azeleas, rhodos, like a slightly acidic soil. OH, and good luck to you. I just started my company this spring also and am loving it. After a month, I'm still working on the 'beginners luck' projects...about 10 folks I knew that wanted stuff done. Soon I'll have to go looking for work from the general public.
  8. mowboy1

    mowboy1 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 21

    You should be able to find a good garden mix - that is a mix of top soil, peat, manure (or compost) and a little sand (~10%). It's great all purpose material. I have been using the same supplier (Western Garden here in Greater Vancouver) that I've been using for years and the results are amazing!

    What ever the mix make sure there's lots of humus in it.

    Happy digging!
  9. sheshovel

    sheshovel LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,112

    That's what my formula is a planting mix,only I mix it myself is all and I like it better than the stuff that suppliers mix and sell as planting mix.
    The reason you don't want to just grab any old topsoil from anyplace it the possiblity of bringing in viruses and disease and pests and their larve.
    Your topsoil should be sterilized or raked out into the sun a few days to kill any eggs or larve present.

    That's one reason why people will pay $7.00 for a bag of dirt.
    Also the use of peat without wetting it first and the overuse of peat can actually suck water away from the new plants.It is no longer recommended to use streight into the garden. SheShovel

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