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Questions tagged [clay]

Fine grained mineral component of soil. Lots of clay can cause a soil to be heavy and sticky.

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What type of soil do I have

I was digging to see what kind of soil I have and I found this gray rust brown layer. It's like clay when compressed but kind of crumbles in chunks. It's around 6" from the top. I'm curious how this ...
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1answer
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How to revive a low nitrogen and rocky soiled lawn?

The situation is explained below in terms of my lawn with the question at the end I recently moved into a new home two years ago and by the looks of the lawn it was low in nitrogen. A little more ...
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Internet says to plant bulbs 3 or 5 times (depending on the bulb) its own depth. What if you're planting in clay soil?

Does the planting depth change when it comes to soil that's more clay then the loamy soil you get at the nurseries? Since clay soil is heavier and has the ability to retain moisture, would it restrict ...
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1answer
70 views

Liriope muscari - why no flowers?

I live in west Essex, England. Several years ago I planted a group of three Liriope muscari in partial shade in very heavy clay soil. They flowered the first year, but have not done so since and haven'...
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Garden smells of dog urine due to no drainage [closed]

I have 2 dogs, who routinely use the bathroom in my front garden. One of my dogs pees in the same place about 90% of the time he goes out. Due to a lack of drainage, and what I imagine is 100% ...
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Drainage problems and replacing existing grass

We have a lot of standing water after rain. Also our grass is "mushy" long after the rain has past. What is the best drainage and how do I prep my soil for new grass? Standing water:
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1answer
68 views

Can blueberry bushes survive in clay soil long term with the right help?

Last year I planted three 1-year-old blueberry bushes in my back yard in clay soil and I've added several inches of mulch and soil amendments, but have a feeling that they won't do well in clay soil ...
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Clay Yard Drainage Issues

We just moved into a house with a yard that's about 45'x80' with some pretty bad drainage issues. After large rain the whole yard is water logged for days, with a few square yards where it actually ...
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2answers
389 views

How can I remove or disperse clay soil stuck in/on grass

I recently augured two holes in my yard for posts. I was not able to keep all the debris contained. I cleaned up what landed on a board I laid down and the large piles with a shovel. I raked up as ...
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2answers
138 views

Potential drainage issue?

I excavated the yard to build a stepping stone walkway. There's water collecting at the intersection of the walkway and the city's sidewalk. I'm planning to back-fill and compact with crushed gravel ...
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4answers
5k views

How can I soften clay soil and enrich it for plants?

A few years ago, we used a clay type soil for filling holes in our garden. Later the soil became very hard and most of our plants and trees are not healthy. Only unwanted plants are growing. Is ...
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3answers
2k views

Clay filled lawn with bad drainage, needs solution

We just bought 28 acres of land with a 30 year old existing house in the center on about 1 acre cleared, the rest is completely tree filled. There is a natural slope only a few degrees heading from ...
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1answer
797 views

Do I need to mix rice husk and clay soil?

Someone gave me 1 sack of rice husk and multiple sacks of clay soil. I've been thinking if just planting in a pure clay soil is enough or do I really need to mix it to rice husk? If I need to mix it, ...
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1answer
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RE: Missouri Clay - how well will day lilies (Hemerocallis fulva) grow in this mixture of soil?

My yard contains a good amount of Missouri clay and I would like to plant some day lilies; will they survive/thrive in thick soil like this? Also, do they do well in direct sun or shade and what type ...
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1answer
1k views

Will Lilac do well in soil with a high concentration of clay?

I would like to plant some Lilac but may be cursed with Missouri clay. Will Lilac generally do OK if planted in clay-rich soil? What is a good way to start a new planting?
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Dead Dogwood post-mortem: How to ensure these next plants do better in clay

This question is accompanied by this previous question... Did my Dogwood die because it was planted with wire around the roots? So clearly my two dead Dogwood trees didn't do so hot in clay. The ...
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2k views

Is drainage needed for a new lawn on compacted clay?

I am in the process of creating a lawn at the back of my house. The previous owner had paved and stoned the area. The size is about 30ft by 40ft, it is raised from the level of the house by about 2ft, ...
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1answer
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What evergreens will tolerate alkaline clay soil in USDA zone 4?

Although the area where I live is famed for it's white pine they grow in sandy soils. My garden has a thin skim of topsoil over six feet of compact alkaline (ph 7) clay. My dwarf white pine is doing ...
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What is the advantage of a raised bed over clay soil vs just amending the clay soil?

Assuming: There are no tree roots or moles around to worry about. I am young and don't mind bending over the extra 6-12 inches. What is the advantage of building a raised bed vs just heavily ...
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2answers
173 views

Should I do a soil test before or after amending soil?

I want to plant blackberries, raspberries, and a vegetable garden in the heavy clay soil in my backyard. So, I plan to heavily amend it by spreading 3" expanded shale and 6" of compost and working ...
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674 views

Can I fix clayey soil with hugel beds?

I heard about hugel kultur beds, study a bit about it and I think it might help me fix my backyard. It is about 13x11 m that I want to be fertile (so far only weed grows in it). It is heavily packed ...
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How to grow Trailing Rosemary as a ground cover in very heavy clay?

I want to cover a large area that is on a steep slope with ground cover. There is absolutely no soil at all, it's all pure clay: hard rock when dry and soft when wet. I was thinking of putting a ...
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2answers
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Is mulch or topsoil better for new lawn in clay soil?

We just built a new home and the back yard has quite a bit of clay in it. We are planning on seeding the yard in the next month (September). I'm trying to decide between topsoil (4-6 inches) or ...
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What should I do with Hostas planted in heavy clay soil?

My landscaper (I use this term very loosely) planted some hostas in my front yard. The soil there is very heavy clay and also covered with mulch. Some of the bulbs seem to be doing alright, others ...
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492 views

Drought-tolerant grass for sunny, wet Texas clay

I live in Texas, and my back yard is on the bottom of a hill; thus it gets lots of run-off from other houses in the subdivision. The run-off causes problems you'd normally expect: Soft, boggy lawn ...
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2answers
441 views

Weeds, Grass, Soil: What to fix first?

My backyard is pretty much a weed garden. I have the following concurrent problems: Poor soil (mostly hard clay) Lots of weeds (mostly bull thistle and some dandelions) Dead grass (around 30-50% of ...
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8k views

How can I amend clay soil with soil, without digging?

I live in a USDA hardiness zone 5 temperate area. Our soil is definitely heavy clay. I have bags and bags of dirt that I can use to amend it, but I'm stuck as to how. See, the clay is very heavy, and ...
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3answers
4k views

Adding clay soil to compost

I just started composting (again). I added a bunch of greens to a big bin, and then I added some soil. In the meanwhile, I was uprooting a bunch of grass for a vegetable bed, and without thinking, I ...
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5answers
64k views

How can we grow grass in our heavy clay yard?

My wife and I have been living in a new subdivision for the past two years and have been struggling with getting grass to fully take in our backyard. Our front yard is sod and has been doing fine, but ...
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3answers
824 views

How much compost should I add to a clay soil for roses?

A few months ago I removed a lot of over grown shrubs; the soil is clay based topsoil on top of solid clay. The top soil is about one spade deep. I don’t think the garden has had any compost for ...
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397 views

Is the “Paris Market” carrot a good variety for clay-rich soil?

I have tried growing carrots now and then, but they were always twisting around all of the rocks and squeezing through the clay, and I basically got a bad crop of strong flavored, tough carrots that ...
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4answers
8k views

Why is there concrete buried across my entire backyard?

As I was planting a few fruit trees last weekend, I discovered an odd and very annoying phenomenon. About 6" down from ground level, I ran across a 2" layer of really crumbly concrete/gravel mixture. ...
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17k views

How do I improve drainage vertically through clayey soil?

I live on a hill where the soil has lots of clay. My back garden has been terraced with small (1m) retaining walls. The net result is that we have several lawns / gardens with the following ...
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3answers
644 views

How should I improve my extremely clayey soil?

I live in North Carolina and the soil here has an extremely high clay content. I have used soil conditioner that consists of composted pine fines to amend the soil. It does an excellent job of ...
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3answers
389 views

What plants take easily to clay soils?

I live in central Scotland, which is a bit damp, and the soil in my garden, despite years of aerating, adding sand etc is still quite a thick clay soil. When it is sunny I get sun all day long, so ...
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2k views

How should I till topsoil into thick clay in small garden beds?

My house is in an area where the native earth is basically solid clay. This means that wet or dry, you can't dig with a shovel and get crumbling dirt — it always clumps together, unless you ...
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How do I work with soil that has a high clay content?

The clay content in my garden soil is rather high. Tilling it is a royal pain, especially if there is even the slightest hint of moisture in the soil. It just turns into big sticky clumps instead of ...