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Having a nightmare with the soil/rubble in our garden - help!

edited August 2022 in Problem solving

My partner and I recently moved into our first house, never having had our own garden before.

The property previously had paving, fake grass and a huge summerhouse with a hottub inside. We've cleared all of this out except for a small patio area and we are now left with a much more open area of garden.

Our plan is to lay turf over this area but the main problem is the soil seems absolutely rubbish! We've dug it over with a fork only to find endless bricks and slabs buried underground, and the soil itself seems either all clumpy and stuck together OR basically pure sand.

What would you recommend we do next here? We feel completely out of our depth. My idea was to finish digging any remaining bricks from the top layer of "soil" and then order two giant bags of top soil to rake in level... 


Images attached.


  • LoxleyLoxley Posts: 5,399
    The sand is presumably a base for the paving and fake grass, and probably only about 150mm deep. I would dig some trial pits to cover all areas and see how far down any rubble and sand is, and whether there are any other things below the surface you need to know about.
  • @mr.tsowenSD0awzgC go with  a spade to such an area and dig a hole so deep that you can see if there is other soil underneath. If it’s spade deep, you could let remove the top part and fill it up with new top soil. There might be some areas that can be improved, but others might need a complete removal. 

    I my garden.

  • PosyPosy Posts: 3,601
    It's your first garden together so I think it's worth doing a proper job that you will enjoy in years to come.

    I would certainly have a look to find out how far the sand and rubble go but I would do a section at a time, removing the rubbish and adding good old fashioned muck. It is almost impossible to have too much and it will turn your soil into fertile loam.  You are likely to need a lot more than two bags of topsoil.

    All this work will delay the lawn but it will be worth it in the long run.
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