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Old Red Sandstone - soil for growing veg in South West Wales

January ManJanuary Man Posts: 196
edited November 2020 in Fruit & veg
Hi all

I don't know much about soil types.  In fact, having only moved to Wales a couple of years ago I foolishly presumed the reddish soil in my garden was clay.  But I've since learnt it is most likely Old Red Sandstone.  

Does anyone know about this soil type and its suitability for growing crops?  I'd love to learn more about it both generally and with regard to growing.

Interestingly, I've noticed where I've had to dig some holes recently there there is no apparent top soil as such.  One hole was around 90cm deep, and another 130cm.  In both there was no change in colour or texture from the top to the bottom.  I'm not sure how normal it is for a soil not to have a top soil! 

Any thoughts or insights most appreciated.

Many thanks


  • steephillsteephill Posts: 1,618
    One clue is what is already growing in your garden and in your neighbours. There are soil test kits which should help determine what nutrients your soil has and the pH. I think it may be an acid soil, we are on greensand, another type of sandstone which is acid. However whatever the pH it will benefit from the addition of plenty of organic matter - compost, manure etc.
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