by Keith Reid
Intended for both small and medium-size gardens, 'Improving Your Soil' reveals the steps to take to achieve the perfect soil base in which to grow plants. With directions on amending poor soil, modifying mediocre earth, aerating compacted topsoil and substrates, and testing pH levels, this book enables gardeners to nurture their plants and promote more abundant growth.
The features of good soil include proper structure and nutrients that encourage healthy plant growth. Soil in "good tilth" is loamy, nutrient rich and friable because it has an optimal mixture of sand, clay and organic matter that prevents severe compaction. Improving Your Soil shows gardeners how to improve the soil in their garden to encourage good seed bedding and a strong root system for proper nutrient disbursement throughout various soil depths.
Flower gardeners and vegetable gardeners will all benefit from the tips and methods in Improving Your Soil. Topics include:
• What your soil can tell you about how you need to manage it
• Soil texture and structure — building soil tilth
• Using amendments to correct soil problems, such as clay or sandy soil
• Creating a good environment for plant growth in different situations
• Providing the right amount of water for plants
• The teeming microscopic world of soils
• Building soil organic matter
• Crop rotations
• Types of compost and how to make good compost
• Managing soils to minimize pest and disease problems
• Feeding the plants — the nutrients they need, and how to get them there
• Overcoming common nutrient deficiencies
• Organic vs. mineral fertilizers.
The detailed information is complemented with line drawings, diagrams and illustrations that demonstrate various soil issues and how to resolve common problems. With information on remedying specific problems with particular plants, 'Improving Your Soil' will be an often consulted resource for all gardeners.
Keith Reid is a soil scientist who works as a manager at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada assessing and advising growers about soil issues.
Dimension: 254mm X 179mm
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