Common Myths and Misunderstandings about Topsoil
We know that all soil is not the same. When gardening or maintaining your yard, you come across the uppermost lawyer full of dirt. This often goes to the first 2-8 inches of soil on your lawn surface or any piece of land. Thus we see both the gardeners and non-gardeners think alike when they are not left with any question – what is the topsoil made of?
You also think that all the topsoil remains the same everywhere. You and others also have certain misunderstandings about the subject. Before you head towards your gardening venture, you need to have certain myths surrounding this subject. Also, you have to separate the fact from the fiction and even learn everything you would require about the topsoil. It will bust your myths. Let us go through the common myths and misunderstandings about topsoil in the following paragraphs:
Myth #1: Lawn Care Does not Necessitate the Use of Topsoil
It’s a myth when you say that lawn care is free from the use of topsoil. However, it is common to see the benefit of topsoil on any lawn. You often notice too many patches in your yard where the grass fails to grow properly. Topsoil has solutions for both these issues.
For growing the grass, you need to spread the topsoil all over the area for one inch deep. The soil evenly distributes grass seeds and allows the soil to combine. Topsoil helps in enabling you to spread the soil on your lawn, entering some inches deep. It helps in allowing the grass to grow underneath, reducing the depression.
The topsoil provides a fresh layer on your lawn, allowing the grass and plants to replenish the nutrient values from the said layer. The plants help in nourishing the plants and compositing the additional nutrients. Also, if you have a newly developed lawn, the topsoil plays an essential role in holding the moisture and slowing down the weed growth.
Thus, saying that lawn care does not necessitate topsoil use is a big myth as you can see it offers too many benefits. In this way, it becomes an integral part of any lawn care aspect.
Myth #2: All Topsoils are the Same
Again a myth that people often believe. In fact, topsoil differs dramatically even within the same garden. We know the lawn has soil made with sand, clay, and silth in different amounts. Allowing a good ratio of these three can help make a perfect drainage system in your yard as it carries a good moisture content.
Also, the pH value of the soil varies from one yard to another and even within your lawn. The types include acidic and alkaline. Hence, there are some plants, including bigleaf hydrangeas, which remain more affected by others in the soil quality. It can even differ from one yard or garden to another.
Also, the topsoil comprises decomposed plant or organic matter, organisms and insects, including earthworms, water and air. Lastly, you can find the soil storing around 0.01 percent of Earth’s total water within its pores. Thus you can make out how all topsoils are not the same as they differ in a big way.
Myth #3: You Can Avoid Tilling with Topsoil
It’s a big myth. The fact is you cannot avoid the process of tiling by opting for the topsoil. When you are putting topsoil, it only means that your soil is not naturally rich to support the grass or plants in your yard. The topsoil is a different soil that is imported from another yard. It is always good to till the topsoil while putting the pre-existing soil for some of the best results.
Tilling your yard before you plan to add the topsoil can help make the yard rich and make the topsoil easy to work. Tiling makes adding topsoil to your yard simple. You can find both the soils coming up with different profiles; hence adding them with different water holding capacities can help move the soil without any hassle. Tilling also add fertility and richness
Also, adding topsoil can have problems as it may not be able to gel properly with the existing soil. The reasons are apparent; both the grounds remain different and carry two various holding capacities. It can even cause stress even in well-watered yards. However, tiling can reduce this stress and add new life to the plants and grass on the lawn.
Myth #4: For a Raised Bed, Garden Soil will Suffice
This is a common myth when people believe that raised beds will only survive with garden soil. If you want your plants and flowers in your lawn to grow, you will require good quality and rich soil. It should come along with rich nutrients and water to get a flourishing yard. On the other hand, garden soil will not suffice for the raised beds.
The reason is simple: garden soil is known to have the wrong consistency. Too much heavy clay or sand can prove fatal to flowers you have planted on your lawn, as these would remain in puddles of water. This can further cause issues like wilt and even plant death.
However, by doing it, you may not damage the new garden bed; all you need is soil with organic content for better results. The soil in your lawn may be poor in organic matter, and it will add nutrition to your new garden bed. It is always good to add a few inches of soil to your existing lawn, but make sure you do not depend on it.
Myth #5: It’s Difficult to Find Good Topsoil
If you live with the notion that it is difficult to get good topsoil, you live with a myth. Topsoil is readily available through a wide range of sources. These include getting it from garden centres and local hardware stores.
However, whenever you plan to get the same, it should be screened, and it means that it comes without any extra materials – debris and small rocks as these are removed.
Also, topsoil is sold in a bag in bulk quantity. If you have a bulk order, it will be priced by the cubic yard, while the price varies as per the availability and location.
Myth #6: Topsoil is a Fertilizer Substitute
It is yet another myth that is commonly found among homeowners. You may discover topsoil is a good blend of the healthy and nourishing base; you can use the fertilizer, mainly when you have ordered a massive amount of topsoil.
It is not often appropriately fertilized when you have the topsoil in bulk. It means that you have to add some extra fertilizer to it. The reasons are apparent, and it is imperative to test the soil you have in the garden; hence you would know where you are lacking before you plan to add to any new soil.
However, if you get the topsoil in small quantities with quality, you will find too many nutrients in it, which the current soil is missing. The topsoil added will play some part. However, you still require fertilizer to some extent only to ensure that the grass and plants in your lawn get the needed nutrients.
Myth #7: Any Soil Can Be Used as a Topsoil
It is a myth that any soil can fit into a topsoil category. Although we know that topsoil is made up of different materials like silt, clay and sand, there are endless variations of the components that can hamper the soil in different ways.
You should know the ideal ratio of the soil, which makes perfect topsoil. The key ingredients of topsoil include 60 percent of sand, 15 percent of clay and 25 percent the slit. Also, you should know that organic material carries all types of dead living matter. It will have an impact on plant growth in its unique ways.
What is the Importance of Using a Topsoil?
If you are among the homeowners, you already understand the importance of using high-quality topsoil on your lawn. It helps in promoting some healthy growth along with breathtaking landscapes to enjoy. Topsoils remain the soil found on the top layer where you find the plants growing.
It covers all the subsoil layers and allows the rock to remain underneath. If your yard has thin soil, topsoil can cater to ample nutrients that plants would need to survive. You can understand the importance of using Topsoil in your yard with the number of benefits. How about checking the benefits of topsoil as under:
- It protects the plant – Topsoil offers decent protection to plants and grass in your lawn surrounded by roots and top layer. It prevents the evaporation of water, which means the plants can quickly get the required water during the hot summer days.
- Rich in nutrients – Topsoil is made of organic matter and many nutrients, which plants can quickly get. However, you need to add fertilizer as per the quality of topsoil you have got for your yard.
- Healthy growth – The next benefit you enjoy is getting ample water and oxygen for the plants. These elements make the plant in your garden stronger.
- Effective drainage – The next benefit you reap with topsoil is that it offers a good drainage system in your lawn, allowing the plants to sustain even during heavy rainfall.
- Prevent Erosion – The next benefit you enjoy is preventing erosion, allowing the plants to sustain in different seasons.
- Environmentally friendly – Topsoil offer a healthy environment, and it employs organic matter from decayed plants. It prevents the use of chemical-based pesticides on your lawn.
Are There any Disadvantages of Topsoil?
Unlike the many benefits of using Topsoil in your yard, it has a few cons. We know that Topsoil is made of different elements. Thus it is possible to see a higher percentage of clay or contaminants.
The pollutants will include perennial weeds, rocks and spilled fuels. They can adversely affect your yard, allowing your plants to hamper. Thus using high-quality topsoil can prevent these disadvantages of topsoil.