Recommendations for Soil Improvement

In order to improve soil conditions, I focus on building deep rich soils by imitating nature and natural processes. I also suggest administering soil tests during the landscape planning process or before planting any vegetation.

Ways to improve soil based on four common landscape situations:

    Soil improvement

  1. Annual Vegetable, Herb, Flower or Market Gardens
    • Encourage biological tillage.
    • Bring your soil to life with compost.
    • Maintain organic matter with mulch.
    • Use crop rotation to mimic diversity.
    • Create self-sustaining fertility with nitrogen fixing trees and dynamic accumulator plants.
    • Till the mulch and top layers of the soil carefully with low-tech tools such as a broad fork.
    • Rake or let chickens scratch the surface at the end of the season.
  2. Soil improvement

  3. Grasslands: Wildflower Meadows, Prairies, Pasture, Cropland
    • Donโ€™t disturb the soil โ€“ ensure the lowest level of mechanical disturbance possible.
    • Always keep your soil covered with perennial cover crops.
    • Planned disturbance in a form of animal impact and planned grazing.
    • In the case of wildflower meadows and prairies controlled burns or annual mowings.
  4. Soil improvement

  5. Food Forests and Permaculture Orchards
    • Improve your soil with green manures and transitional ground-covers.
    • Inoculate your soil with mycorrhizal fungi.
    • Use woody mulch to feed the fungi.
    • Create self-sustaining fertility with nitrogen fixing trees and dynamic accumulator plants.
  6. Soil improvement

  7. Perennial Gardens, Shrubs and Trees
    • Add manures for nitrogen.
    • Use compost to improve soil conditions.
    • Create self-sustaining fertility with nitrogen fixing trees and dynamic accumulator plants.
    • Cover the soil with mulch.
    • Till the mulch and top layers of the soil carefully with low-tech tools such as a broad fork, rake or let chickens scratch the surface at the end of the season.