How do I amend my dirt???

adellabedella_usaJune 16, 2013

I just moved to one of the Houston suburbs. I have a brand new house with some of the ugliest landscaping I have ever seen. The builder just dropped some fill dirt in and threw in whatever plants he could find. I enjoy doing my own landscaping. I'm not sure what I'm supposed to add to make the dirt more usable. When I lived in Oklahoma, my landscaper recommended Back to Nature which was a cotton seed lint compost. It worked great. My landscaping looked awesome when I left. I'm a bit intimidated by all of the traffic here. I couldn't find a good source of BTN nearby. I'm not sure it is what I need anyway. What would you suggest to better prepare my flower beds?


Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
wantonamara Z8 CenTex

Best case scenario would be to get soil test but if you don't do that I would go to a GOOD nursery that sells bulk dirt in your area and describe or take a pot of your dirt and ask what people there do to amend. They will be familiar with your area.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2013 at 2:30AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
weldontx(z 8a TX)

Good suggestion above. Amend with organic material as much as possible. DON"T add sand. Is there a Living Earth place in your area. They sell bulk compost. In the meantime-- Mulch, Mulch, Mulch. The BtN is good stuff if worked into the soil at least a little, but as wantonamara suggested, see if you can find
a place to get bulk compost.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2013 at 3:13PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

It depends on the type of soil you have. In DFW, we have that horrible black clay, which I removed. I replaced it with bagged soil mixed with manure and peat moss. So far, so good. I learned the hard way (of course) not to add more than one-third manure to the mix.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2013 at 11:23AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
wantonamara Z8 CenTex

If you have clay, One can add gypsum, expanded shale and lots of compost. I have stick to your boots red death clay at my old house and in one small spot now. Decoposed granite is good only if added with lots of compost. Everytime I worked my land I add compost, if nothing else.

I read a thing where a person took a whole bunch decomposed hardwood mulch and mixed in the dirt and let it sit for a year to decompose further and had really good luck with that.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2013 at 11:49AM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Can you ID this bird?
These pictures are from Carrie. Can you ID this bird? Thank...
roselee z8b S.W. Texas
This is really different.
Need help with a Houston full-sun bed
Hi there! I have a full-sun bed with miscanthus in...
Lady Banks on roof
Lady Banks, Old Blush, and Mermaid (not yet blooming)...
Need idea for replacing evergreen shrub in shade
I pulled out a pittosporum that was in a shady spot...
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™