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Soil looks lifeless and dead

There is a large patch of soil, now a meter wide in my greenhouse that is dead. Last autumn there was some goats beard fungi ( that’s what it looked like on line)  so I removed it. I then sprayed with an anti fungal.  The soil has now got lot of grey ash looking, dead lifeless clumps. Water doesn’t soak in it. Can anyone identify this and help with a solution. Valerie 


  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 9,872
    edited March 2020
    Hi Valerie
    As the area is covered and protected in the greenhouse, the soil has probably dried out and therefore unable to support much in the way of life.
    If you grow plants in it the best plan is to replace it every 3-4 years. I have a border 8ft x 2ft in my g/house where I grow tomatoes. I noticed the soil was not looking very healthy a few weeks ago, and I've grown toms. in it for the last 3 years, so I dug out 10 barrow-loads (to a depth of about 15") and replaced it from my compost bins.
    If that suggestion doesn't appeal, try digging it over and give it a water.
    But if you can incorporate some compost (and therefore life) your plants will appreciate it.
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • thanks Pete, it’s a bit of a task to dig it all out but I have some bags of cow manure. I will get them tipped on the soil and give a good watering. Hopefully things will get better with that. Cheers,Valerie 
  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 9,872
    That should do it Valerie.
    Outside the soil is exposed to the elements and so gets rain, wildlife and whatever else nature drops on it to keep it alive.
    In the greenhouse it's just a strip of soil largely unconnected to the outside world and it gets neither rain nor wildlife so can become rather sterile and needs refreshing now and then.
    Mind you, shifting 10 barrow loads is a good workout :)
    Good luck
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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