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bed prep

I've talked about this so many times that some will be bored but all of the
minerals needed are in the clay so don't add anything. If you use mulch to
plant in by the following method everything is easy.

Put down hardwood mulch about 6' deep then plant in the mulch directly on
top of the clay and water water water the soil organisms will change the
structure of the clay. The main one is fungus which turns the organic
matter into aggregates of soil and carries it into the clay on the sticky
root like parts of the fungus. At that point bacteria and worms and other
fungus will get involved to create soil. If you go to great lengths to
"amend" the soil it will have the appearance of a good soil but in fact
will only look the part. The bad news is you can't do it, the good news is
it will happen if you provide the organic matter and get out of the way.

It takes about 3 years for the process to work and there is no short cut.
The misinformation all revolves around soilless mixes designed for
container growing. They only appear to work in the soil because we deliver
fertilizer, minerals and water to a soil situation equal to a container but
this is a life support system that cost money, time and does't work long term.

I'm not going to give references but the USDA, U of MN, U of Saskatchewan
and many others have done work in this area.

SIMPLE IS BEST, or maybe God's very complicated way is best.

Yes Van Wade grows good looking plants with a lot of time and money.

>I wish to open a new hosta bed in what is typically midwestern clay.  What
>type of amendments do you recommend?  Also fertilizer?  How much green sand?
>Jan - Zone 5, Indiana

Butch Ragland So. Indiana zone 5

"Conflict is as addictive as nicotine, alcohol, drugs, etc.
I'm sorry to report that cooperation is not."
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