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How fine should soil be?

Hello, have grown flowers from seed for years and a few edibles in containers but am preparing a veg patch for the first time. Have sifted soil through a quarter inch which feels lovely like sand but am now wondering if this is too fine but have no idea how the soil should be. Any advice gratefully received. Thanks 

Posts

  • WaysideWayside Posts: 770
    edited 22 May
    I'd have thought compaction is your enemy.  Once you get roots in there, use mulch, and/or add organic matter that's probably all good for drainage/absorbtion etc.  Just use boards and avoid standing on it.  What's your soil type?  What's underneath?
  • alfharris8alfharris8 Posts: 3
    Hello, thank you for your reply. Not sure what the soil is. Having always done more container gardening where you use compost this is a new thing for me. When we dug out the earth it was quite stony and there is what I would describe as shale at the bottom. Have a pile of smaller pieces of earth and some small stones left in the unsifted pile. Should I consider replacing some of that to allow for better drainage? I have still to include some compost also. It was more a concern that the soil was too fine if there can be such a thing. It's a joy to rake. 
  • PosyPosy Isle of Wight.Posts: 1,857
    Is it very sandy? Clay soil comes in big solid lumps, sifting is not an option, but sandy soil can be very fine. Instead of adding compost, I would dig in composted manure. You can often get this from local horse owners who are glad to give it away, but garden centres sell it in bags, too.
  • alfharris8alfharris8 Posts: 3
    I think it must be sandy as it has sifted quite well. Thanks both for the replies so soon after my posting. First time using this so really pleased. 
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