How can I improve the quality of soil in my garden? Mostly clay!!

It seems like most of what I plant rots because of the clay.

  9 answers
  • Holly Kinchlea-Brown Holly Kinchlea-Brown on Jul 12, 2017
    Easiest way would be to use your existing soil as a base. Add 6-8 inches of topsoil on top before planting.

  • Laurie Harry Laurie Harry on Jul 12, 2017
    Amend your soil with something like Nature's Helper.

  • Fiddledd224 Fiddledd224 on Jul 12, 2017
    I have clay soil, too! It is VERY hard to work with. But this , works - work in small areas and mix the clay with equal parts of sand, bagged soil and peat moss. Mix well and it WILL start to break the clay down. Don't try to do the whole area at once - the clay is really difficult to mix all at once.

  • Lavonne Lavonne on Jul 12, 2017
    Add sand, composted manure, and peat moss.

  • Jean Jean on Jul 12, 2017
    that's a long process, involving deep-rooted plants used as cover crops (Alfalfa, red clover, and buckwheat, which is often tilled back in to the soil before it flowers and seeds are all classic choices) but you might want to look up hugelkultur, where woody material is buried at the bottom of a raised bed, accelerating the way nature builds soil.

  • S.h. S.h. on Jul 12, 2017
    Best method would be to get as much compost as you can and cover the area that you want to raise vegetables or flowers. Minimum of 4-5 inches, the more the better. If you can work this into the soil, then do this but cover with more and more compost. Grow vegetables in this. It takes years to improve clay soil. Do NOT work clay when wet, it will compact. Google "Hugekulture"; a method of using raised beds. In a small home garden, the layers of compost is easiest and over years will improve the clay soil. You can also use Gypsum to loosen the soil.

  • Peg Peg on Jul 12, 2017
    You may want to switch to gardening with grow pots. No need to worry about soil then.