What soil do i need for flowers?

  4 answers
  • PJ Wise PJ Wise on Sep 14, 2017
    The following information came from http://homeguides.sfgate.com/should-buy-topsoil-potting-soil-flower-vegetable-garden-97088.html, and addresses the type of soil needed to grow flowers:

    Should I Buy Topsoil or Potting Soil for My Flower & Vegetable Garden?
    Potting soil is formulated for a container environment and may be plant-specific.

    Planting mixes such as potting soil and topsoil are formulated to help plants thrive in different growing situations. When preparing an outdoor vegetable garden or flowerbed, knowing the differences between topsoil and potting soil ensures you buy the mix that will provide the proper growing conditions for your plants.

    Soil Contents
    According to Michigan State University Extension, no legal definition exists for the word "topsoil." It’s a mixture of materials in which plants thrive and may include coarse to fine sand and organic material such as manure, stable sweepings, wood fines, rice hulls or a byproduct of sugar milling called bagasse. Potting soil is formulated to retain water and nutrients, and to prevent compaction. The primary ingredients in most potting soils include peat, perlite, vermiculite and aged compost.

    The Differences
    Each brand of topsoil may contain a wide range of materials because topsoil is not literally taken from the top of a field. Ingredients are more consistent among potting soils because potting soils are designed to create a specific growing environment. Topsoil is not sterile, which means it may contain weed seeds. If the soil is heated to kill those seeds, then the heat also kills beneficial microorganisms, and their death would not be helpful to your garden plants. Potting soil doesn’t typically contain weed seeds, because it isn’t made with material found in an outdoor garden. Potting soil mixes often are referred to as "soilless" because they contain no actual soil.

    Soil Selection
    If you’re not planting in containers, then buy topsoil instead of potting soil for your garden. Topsoil is meant to be combined with existing soil in outdoor beds. It is not meant to be used in container gardens, however, because it stays too moist and may lead to root rot in plants. If allowed to dry, topsoil also tends to shrink and pull away from the sides of a container it is inside. Potting soil is designed to improve the performance of container-grown plants, but it shouldn’t be used in an outdoor planting bed because it may be too well-draining, possibly causing the soil to dry out too rapidly.

    Planting Tips
    When applying topsoil to your garden beds, don’t just pour it on top of them. Leaving topsoil as a separate layer can create soil drainage and plant growth problems because roots will stop at the original layer of soil, particularly if it is denser than the upper layer of topsoil. In order to produce the best results, add a 2- to 3-inch-thick layer of topsoil to the top of a garden bed, and mix the topsoil into the existing soil. Add more topsoil if necessary because the mixed soil creates a transitional layer that allows for proper root growth.

    Always test your garden soil to determine whether or not fertilizer is necessary prior to planting. Topsoil is not fertilizer; although it may provide some nutrients to plants, it doesn’t contain everything they need to grow.

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Sep 14, 2017
    You should be able to buy Bags of Top Soil and Multi Purpose Compost from your Local Garden Centre or DIY. Mix them together ......................

  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Sep 14, 2017
    That depends on what you are planting

  • Jean Thompson Jean Thompson on Sep 14, 2017
    Contact a nearby Farmer and he would be glad to get rid of the manure, you can ask if he has a old pile that you can get some from for Free.. Older manure that has aged can be added to Compost and bagged dirt/garden soil to make a nice growing medium for your plants...