Knowing the basics about soil

  • All garden soils are very similar, in that they are inorganic mineral combinations such as potassium, phosphorus, calcium, iron, carbon, manganese, etc., with a very small percentage of organic matter.
  • Even though soils are primarily minerals such as those required for healthy plant growth, thousands of years of weathering, leaching, and crop removal have left most soils deficient in water-soluble mineral nutrients, making supplementation necessary.
  • Soil provides five essential functions, which are necessary for crops to succeed:
    1. Provide anchorage for and protect plant roots.
    2. Hold water plus oxygen for plant use.
    3. Store minerals that plants need for food.
    4. Act as a temperature regulator in hot weather.
    5. Provide drainage of water from plant roots.
  • Adding small amounts of minerals (explained in Feeding Your Plants) to your soil makes soil amendments unnecessary, and will assure fast, healthy, and uniform growth.

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