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Is this typical of screened topsoil? (pictures)

Hi folks, thought I'd ask this question before we get into an argument with the landscaping company we bought our topsoil from!

Their website states that this has "been through a screener and this removes any stones and other material of 20mm and above leaves the soil ideal for spreading in vegetable beds or sowing grass seed onto"

As you can see, some fairly chunky rocks in there, as well as large sticks and even some roots. The soil is also in huge clods which will be nearly impossible to rake :/ Quite a high clay content in some bags too...

 It's got nearly as many stones and rubbish as the bit we were wanting to lay it on!



  • Singing GardenerSinging Gardener Posts: 1,220

    That doesn't look like topsoil at all to me. We're having some landscaping done at present and we've had two different sorts of topsoil. One has some small stones (but none bigger than 20mm and probably mostly a lot smaller) and the other seems not to have any stones. Both are crumbly and rake beautifully. Neither have any sticks, lumps or bits of clay. I think you should complain!

  • Andy19Andy19 Posts: 671

    I would tell them to uplift and replace with far better topsoil or refund my money please.

  • LilyBellLilyBell Posts: 2

    Thank you for your help! We called them, and they told us that it had been screened and was of "Top Quality". We had a professional take a look, and he believes that if it was screened, it was done so when wet and therefore clumped together and wont have sifted out the rocks and sticks. He also says it is of poor quality and has informed us to enquire as to whether they comply to the British standard for topsoil (of which we didn't know there was one!).

    Here's the information in case anybody else has something like this happen! We are very annoyed, have 10 bulk bags of the rubbish sat out there holding our project up image

    Topsoil Suppliers will be required to
    provide a Declaration of Analysis
    This will include:
    ?? Location of topsoil source, and previous and current
    land use for Natural Soils

    ?? Date of Sampling and Analysis

    ?? Test results including Contamination Parameters

    ?? Written confirmation of compliance with the relevant
    Topsoil Grade in BS3882:2007

  • WateryWatery Posts: 388

    Thank you for that information. It is quite helpful.  I was very lucky last autumn when I ordered a bulk bag of topsoil from a company called Bradford Building Supply.  We received a phone call the day it was supposed to be delivered from the company apologising but saying that they inspected the topsoil and it wasn't to their satisfaction so they would be delayed and then they insisted their supplier get some better quality material.  I was impressed.

  • jo 12jo 12 Posts: 8

    Hi I had 2 tonne loose topsoil last weekend from garden centre. It wasn't until I started to wheel it into the garden I noticed it becoming more and more Sandy and absolutely full of stones mostly 30-40mm. There was clumps sand and clay like substance and definatley not topsoil. Know find the company arguementative and refusing to admit pictures I have sent is their SOIL. They will not come out to look at it and refused a refund. This has now left me with 2 tonne of rubbish which i can either rake and sieve or digging back up and moving. I cannot proceed with my project. So frustrated never been treated so badly. Any advice? Thanks jo

  • KT53KT53 Posts: 8,040

    Unless you can check the quality before it's unloaded the supplier really holds all the cards.  When we had our garden done a load arrived and the guy doing our work sent it straight back because it looked much like the photo in this thread.  2nd delivery, from the same company, was fine.  Suggests intent on their part to deliver **** first and see if they get away with it.

  • richhondacrichhondac Posts: 222
    Trading standards would help if it's not as described it's not what you have paid for, if you paid on a credit card ring them and they will recover the money

    That soil looks like sub base to me
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