Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Planting in Clay Soils

What about us in clay soils?
Clay planting is a tough call; you are dealing with a very slow perking away of the water. If you water too much you can drowned out the roots, or worse yet, rot the roots; and there’s no recovery from root rot.

Here you dig a swallow hole, 2/3’s the length of the root ball, and go out wider, say a foot and a half to two feet. Back fill with sandier topsoil, sloping up to the top of the root ball.

Check the wetness of the root ball by poking a rake handle down into the planting hole from time to time. If it comes up wet, hold off on the watering. If moist, back off. If on the dryer side, give it a little.

This technique should be used if you are in a flat situation where the excess water has no place to go.
If you are on a slope of some kind you can go back to the typical planting methods of depth and width, but with this difference. Make a three to four inch trench on the downward slope of the hole, but long enough so the excess water can run out; fill this little trench with sand, and the planting hole with a good topsoil.

If you have any questions feel free to e-mail me at or post a comment on this Blog. And like us on Facebook at Niemeyer Landscaping. For more Landscape and garden info and pictures on the subject check us out at

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