Five ways to improve garden soil in late spring/early summer
This time of year is perfect for getting your garden ready for a great summer and autumn by improving the soil quality to grow all sorts of wonderful plants. Here we look at the five best ways to improve the quality of your garden soil during late spring and early summertime.
1. Remove Weeds and DebrisThe first task is to remove the unwanted weeds and other debris. This is especially important if you are planning on planting new flowers or vegetation as the soil will need to be exposed in order to freshen it up.
You can repurpose any dead organic matter via the compost heap, although there may also be plenty of already-composted organic matter or mulch which you will be able to incorporate into the soil. Un-composted mulch will need to be raked away to expose the soil, but use your eye to gauge its quality as it can be worth keeping and reapplying once you have finished preparing the soil and planting new vegetation.
2. Loosen the Compacted SoilSoil can become compacted over winter so you will need to loosen it up. With a tiller or spade, till and turn the soil to a depth of around 30cm. It may also be a good idea to buy topsoil to add a layer of quality soil that is rich in nutrients. Mulch and leaf litter can be mixed in with the soil if it is well composted, but removed if too fresh.
This is also the ideal time to conduct a test to check on the pH and nutrient levels of the soil. Clay-based soil will benefit from a generous layer of compost or fresh topsoil which will improve the texture, nutrient content and moisture-retention of the soil.
3. Add Fertiliser Pruned Plants
Prune or shape overgrown vegetation now as you should still be able to see the branch structure before the full summer bloom arrives. Avoid pruning old wood vegetation though and limit the pruning to new wood vegetation. Also use a product containing isopropyl alcohol to sterilise your pruners between each plant’s pruning just in case any of your plants have a disease which you don’t want to spread around your garden.
Add some fertiliser to the soil afterwards as the plants will be in a state of recovery after pruning, and the extra nutrients in the soil will help them heal their wounds quickly.
4. Prepare New Beds and PlantersStart building garden beds and filling planters such as pots, baskets and window boxes with good quality soil, using your compost and spare topsoil product to allow plenty of time for the soil to settle into its new container.
5. Start Planting EarlyYou want to complete your first wave of planting as soon as you have prepared your garden soil and sorted out the new beds and planters. Many plants can even be started indoors ahead of time if you have the space for it, while the likes of bulbs and perennials are easy enough to plant in their assigned places if you know how deep to go and how much space to allow between them according to the particular plant.
You can also now re-apply garden mulch to stop weeds growing around your desired plants and competing with them for the soil’s nutrients.
If you need to buy topsoil or mulches for your garden project, then contact Springbridge via our website or call today on 0845 370 1921 for more information about garden mulch and topsoil products.