The Dirt on Dirt

Submitted on April 13, 2015

At Weed Man Chilliwack, we officially want to welcome Spring! It is high time to start planning your lawn care needs for the upcoming season. When thinking about how you are going to have a beautiful lawn this summer, soil is one of the most important factors a homeowner needs to consider in beautiful BC.

We at Weed Man Chilliwack, want to give you the dirt on dirt. Most people do not think twice about soil. After all it's just dirt, right? Wrong! Soil is a complicated thing, made up of minerals, organic matter, water, air and micro-organisms. It is the foundation for a healthy beautiful lawn and plays a vital role in how essential nutrients and lawn treatment services go to feed your turf. Soil is part of your lawns' ecosystem and in order for this ecosystem to thrive we have to recognize that there is a codependency. To have the greatest impact in creating a sustainable environment for your lawn, we need to approach and cater to eachcomponent collectively. In Chilliwack, we have three common types of soil. Soils are rarely made up of one typebut rather a mixture of all three. These soils are grouped into one of 12 textural classes based on their breakdown. To determine what you're dealing with we suggest digging a small hole to reveal the earth below.

Clay Clay is a heavy and dense soil which makes it hard for water to drain. In fact, water drains very slowly based on the tight soil pack. Oxygen, which plays a vital role in your lawns growth also has a difficult time reaching your turfs' roots.

Sand Sand is quite the opposite of clay, it is incredibly porous, which leads to very fast water drainage. The fast water drainage leads to a low nutrient content in your soil. Sandy soil's inability to hold water and nutrients make it hard for your grass to grow

Loam Loam soil is the ideal dirt. If you have a lawn with loam soil, you are sitting pretty. Loam is the ideal soil as its texture is porous and its make up doesn't dry out lawns in the summer or water log in the winter. This makes it an ideal soil all year round.

Understanding the Mix Loams, the ideal soils, share the attributes of both—good aeration, drainage and moisture and nutrient retention.Soil structuredetermines how well soilretains moisture and nutrients, and how easily it allows plant roots to penetrate and grow. "Soils that are ideal for plant growth bind together to form loose, granular aggregates about the size of cookie crumbs and retain moisture and nutrients. Organic matter and thriving communities of soil organisms are critical to this good structure. Sandy soils do not bind together and tend to have the consistency of dry cake mix. Clay soils bind tightly and become very hard when dry. Compacted soils have a "platey" structure, with multiple layers of flat, thin peds. Weight bearing down on the soil has caused the larger pores to collapse, restricting the movement of air and water and limiting the growth of plant roots."* Understanding the soil composition can be difficult. Equally as difficult, is developing a plan that will work for your property. Everyone has a unique situation, and recognizing that your property is effected by when it was built, the indigenous soils, and deposited soils is a step in the right direction. Newhomes are challenged with developers spreading foundation soils removed from lower levels throughout the property. This can drastically change your soil composition. Taking measures to understand where your property is today, will shape how you approach lawn care moving forward. If your lawn is made up of clay, sand and even loam it can be pretty tough to get good results. But fear not, there are solutions to help. Top dressing regularly with loam type dirt can improve your soil over time. Add in cultural practices and lawn care services like, aeration, lawn fertilizer and insect control from Weed Man Chilliwack and you can be sure that your lawn will start to flourish.

Cultural Practices Aerationhelps break up the hard compacted soil, and it allows essential nutrients and lawn fertilizers to get to the roots, along with air and water. This brings us back to creating a stable foundation for your turf by catering to your soil. Fertilizerskeep your lawn healthy, which in time develops a thicker lawn. As grass plants decay they add valuable organic matter back into the soil, and essentially kick starts a recycling process on your lawn. With a thicker lawn, you also create an environment in which weeds struggle to survive. Insect control is also an important way to ensure that your soil doesn't become unable to support your lawn. Insects and pests can be incredibly invasive, much like our residentChafer Beetles, and Fire Ants which have been wreaking havoc as of late.

Weed Man Chilliwack has a number of safe options that can help control an insect problem. Each and every lawn requires different treatment and maintenance because there are no two lawns alike. Your lawns' required maintenance and treatments depend on several factors including where you live, sun exposure, the condition of your lawn, soil type and so on. So to get started on growing a beautiful lawn, take advantage of afree healthy lawn analysiscompliments of your Weed Man Chilliwackprofessionals. We can help you with custom solutions, tried and tested programs developed locally for Chilliwack conditions, and provide guidance on how we can work together this season. Sources *http://landscapeforlife.org/soil/how-to-determine-soil-type  

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