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Old 01-31-2007, 07:10 AM   #1
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Clay Problem


Last year I thought my problem was "water". I have since discovered that the problem is an excessive amount of clay in my front yard. The ground is very hard and grass won't grow well but moss will. I plan on tilling the entire front yard and beginning over but I have a question. What should I add to the soil to break up the clay and soften the ground? Should I use any kind of mulch to break it down? I know already that I need some lime. What are your suggestions that would keep the expense down? I do have a tiller and a lot of time. Thanks for any advice.

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Old 01-31-2007, 07:49 AM   #2
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Clay Problem


It may just be that the soil/clay needs more nutrients in order to grow things. Moss grows because clay retains moisture. You may want to take a sample of the clay to a garden center (not a Big Box store) and have it tested. They can also recommend any additional material to "soften" it. Tilling the soil will aerate it and allow necessary fertilizers and nutrients to infiltrate it. Good luck.

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Old 01-31-2007, 11:16 AM   #3
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Clay Problem


Read this
http://72.14.209.104/search?q=cache:...s&ct=clnk&cd=1

Sorry for the long URL
Bottom line - Remove about 50% of the clay, replace with sand, till to 18-24". This is not very practicle though. Article talks about other ways to improve the soil using organics.
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Old 01-31-2007, 11:24 AM   #4
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Clay Problem


I tried tilling in sand with my clay in the garden. Got a gummy mess. Since it was a small (20 x 50') area, I just incorporated mulch. Took 3 pick-up truck loads at $15 a load but it helped my problem. HELPED, not cured the problem. Will probably add more mulch this year when I till the garden up.
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Old 01-31-2007, 08:09 PM   #5
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Clay Problem


Just a warning about the mulch, give it time to decompose before adding more- when organics decompose in soil they strip nitrogen from the soil, which grass needs. If your localiity has a compose site or someone you know does, that would be a better choice for adding organic matter to your soil.
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