The soil is an essential part of any garden. It is where
the plants are cultivated, and if the soil is of a good
quality, the plants that grow there are evidently good as
While one can’t find the perfect soil for the perfect
garden all of the time, combining different types of soils
can produce the same effect. Below is a list of the common
soil types and what they do.
- this type of soil is known for its lack of ability to
hold water. This can be good in a way since this quality
helps prevent the roots of plants from getting soaked in
water for a very long time.
The only downside is that one has to water the plants more
often than other soil types.
- gets very sticky when wet. While this type of soil can
hold nutrients very well, it is unable to let in air and
water very well which could be detrimental to plants.
- is somewhat of a cross between clay and sand. This type
of soil holds a lot of nutrients like clay and doesn’t
retain water well just like sand.
- is the most ideal type of soil because almost every type
of plants will grow on this. It is because loam is
formulated using a good balance of sand, clay and silt.
Just like silt and clay, it holds nutrients well. As for
water retention, it is midway between sand and clay since
loam can hold water pretty well without draining it as
easily as sand would.
There is no doubt that choosing to do your own landscaping is the best way to go for many people. Not only do you save a lot of money by not hiring professionals to do the work, you also will get to enjoy a lot of time outside. Landscaping is good exercise and a great way to spend an afternoon.
Any do-it-yourself landscapers will require a variety of tools, from basic to high tech, in order to get the job done right. Here are some of the tools that are essential for doing your own landscaping.
Software: Yes, believe it or not, a good landscaping program can be essential when you are designing the layout of your lawn and garden. I use the Master Landscape & Home Design by Punch! Software. I bought this program for my wife back in 2003, and we have used it a lot ever since. The 3D Photoview technology allows us to put in digital pictures of our home and garden and then implement any changes on the screen before we put them into effect in our yard. The PlantFinder allows us to find plants that are the most appropriate to the soil and climate conditions where we live, and it even has a calculator to help us estimate the costs of the plants from different stores. This is about as high tech as I get when it comes to landscaping, though.
Lawn mower: You might not realize it, but mowing the lawn is an essential part of any landscape. A lawn mower is therefore a critical part of doing your landscaping yourself. Buying a lawn mower can be a tricky business- you can get models with everything included but the kitchen sink. The fact is, a second hand lawn mower that works can be just as good as a brand new model straight from the catalogues. If you have a large area to mow, you will probably want to invest in a riding lawn mower to save time and aching muscles.
Weed Whacker: There are points on your lawn that your mower just won’t reach, around fences and right beside patios, around any fruit trees or berry canes. For these, you will need a good weed whacker. The best models come with several attachments, appropriate to chopping down a variety of weeds- especially if you have slacked off and allowed some of the hardier varieties to grow up. These can be death for the average string-and-coil whacker, and you will need some good plastic to stand up to them.
There are several other tools that every landscaper needs, most of them relatively low tech in comparison to those above. A variety of shovels, rakes, and pruning instruments are all essential, as are a good pair of gloves. All of these tools will be dependent on what you have planted in your landscaping, and more complicated designs may even require some basic knowledge of electricity, carpentry, and hydroponics.