As a gardener, you know that healthy and nourishing soil is the key to successful plant growth, and without it, they simply won’t thrive.
One of the best ways to get the best soil possible is to use a soil improver. In this blog post, we’ll explore its benefits and how it can help you achieve a beautiful and bountiful garden.
So, why should I use soil improver for my garden?
Gardeners and farmers frequently use soil improver to increase soil fertility as it contains essential nutrients like nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium that plants need to grow and develop.
By enriching the soil with these nutrients, you ensure the best environment for your plants to get healthy and strong, and in no time, you’ll be cultivating a flourishing garden that blooms all year round.
Soil improvers improve the soil’s structure, so they help prevent the leaching of nutrients, ensuring that plants receive everything they need whenever needed.
2. Soil Structure
Not only does it prevent nutrient leaching, but also increases water-holding capacity, reduces compaction and enhances drainage.
This keeps it protected for a long period, whether retaining moisture on the hottest day of the year or keeping the roots stable against the toughest of winds.
3. Organic matter
Soil improvers contain organic materials which increase the soil’s organic matter, resulting in improved soil structure, nutrient retention and microbial activity.
Microbes and microbial activity are vital for healthy plant life, as it helps break down nutrients, provide moisture for plant growth, and protect plants from diseases. Without microbes, plants would struggle to get the nutrients they need to stay healthy.
4. pH balance:
Aside from cacti and weeds (the latter, no one ever wants), most plants thrive in a pH level between 5.5 and 6.5, staying fertilised by the nutrients without experiencing long periods of drought.
Of course, not all soil is at this level and may require adjustments to be either more acidic or alkaline. To achieve this, you can use a soil improver designed to regulate the soil’s pH balance and give your plants the best opportunity to thrive.
5. Future Proof
Reduced soil erosion
Soil erosion causes a big problem, washing away the top layer of soil and removing important nutrients. Along with this, it also makes it harder for plants to grow as there’s less soil for the roots to hold onto.
Fortunately, soil improvers effectively reduce this as they improve the soil’s structure and water-holding capabilities, reducing erosion and retaining moisture for the future.
Increased disease resistance
Alongside erosion protection, soil improvers enhance plant disease resistance and health. By receiving the right conditions and nutrients to thrive, they can withstand fungal, bacterial, viral and nematode diseases,, and environmental stresses including drought, heat and flooding.
What plants is soil improver best for?
Soil improver is a great solution for enhancing soil health as it enhances soil fertility, structure and nutrient availability. There are many plants that will thrive from this including:
- Vegetable Crops: Tomatoes, peppers, lettuce, cucumbers & squash
- These plants benefit from nutrient-rich soil, improved drainage, and enhanced microbial activity.
- Fruit Trees: Apple, pear, peach, and citrus trees
- Improving soil fertility and structure promotes healthy root development, nutrient uptake, and overall tree growth.
- Flowers: Roses, sunflowers, marigolds, petunias, dahlias and daylilies.
- These thrive in organic matter-enriched soil filled with essential nutrients and supporting microbial activity.
- Herbs: Basil, parsley, thyme, mint, oregano and rosemary.
- These plants appreciate well-drained soil with good nutrient availability for the best tastes possible.
- Container Plants: Potted flowers, herbs, and small trees,
- Container soils often require amendments to improve drainage, water retention, and nutrient availability, ensuring healthy growth in a confined space.
You should remember that while soil improvers can benefit these plants, the soil improver needs to be incorporated into existing soil and will only work in conjunction with sunlight, water, and climate preferences.
When to not use soil improver?
Whilst many plants respond well to soil improver, many do not and you can sometimes end up causing more harm than good. Some plants to avoid using soil improver on include:
- Native or Wild Plants: Anything that is grown locally in your area
These may have adapted to the specific soil conditions around them.
- Desert Plants: Cacti and succulents
These are adapted to thrive in arid or desert environments with low-nutrient and well-drained lean soils.
- Bog Plants: Heather, reeds, sedges and Sphagnum moss.
Plants that naturally grow in boggy or waterlogged conditions require specific soil conditions that will otherwise be disturbed by soil improvers.
- Acid-Loving Plants: Some plants, such as azaleas, rhododendrons, blueberries, and some conifers, prefer acidic soil conditions.
These plants thrive in acidity, so if you use an alkaline soil improver, you will be causing harm to them. Make sure to use an acidic soil improver that will reduce the alkalinity of the soil.
Is soil improvement right for me?
Whether you’re a long-time gardener or a new homeowner looking to maintain a healthy garden, investing in a high-quality soil improver can help you protect your soil and ensure it remains healthy and productive for years to come.
Try Envar’s peat-free Compost Soil Improver, designed to enhance the properties of your soil.