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Old 14-06-2003, 07:32 AM
kcchin
 
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Default Sand sand and sand

I have a small garden 30meter square. I dig down and find that the top 40cm
is just plain
sand ,little or no clay or silt. Any crop I plant, the soil is only good for
one crop, next generation
are stunted and will not grow. I assume that I have exhuasted the nutrients
for that crop.
What do I do?
Cart off the top soil (in this case sand, sand) and replace it with a lorry
load of garden soil, or could
I do something else?
I have access to limitless amount of dry leaves throughout the year to use
if I choose to.
Carting off the sand and replace it with garden soil is rather expensive
here in Singapore.



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Old 14-06-2003, 11:44 AM
Pat Kiewicz
 
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Default Sand sand and sand

kcchin said:

I have a small garden 30meter square. I dig down and find that the top 40cm
is just plain
sand ,little or no clay or silt. Any crop I plant, the soil is only good for
one crop, next generation
are stunted and will not grow. I assume that I have exhuasted the nutrients
for that crop.
What do I do?
Cart off the top soil (in this case sand, sand) and replace it with a lorry
load of garden soil, or could
I do something else?
I have access to limitless amount of dry leaves throughout the year to use
if I choose to.
Carting off the sand and replace it with garden soil is rather expensive
here in Singapore.


Consider composting some of the leaves and add the compost to the sand.
Chop up the others and use them to mulch the garden. Add used tea leaves or
coffeegrounds to the mulch, if you can get those in quantity.

The first rule of sandy soil is NEVER to dig in it without adding some sort
of organic material -- compost, seaweed, alfalfa pellets (rabbit pellets will
do as a substitute), aged manure, aged mulch -- never EVER!

Any fertilizers will need to be applied in frequent, very light doses or be
either natural slow-release fertilizers (like cottonseed meal or alfalfa meal)
or manufactured to be slow-release (pelletized, resin-encapsulated or chemically
altered to slow its availability/soluability).
--
Pat in Plymouth MI

Any technology distinguishable from magic is insufficiently advanced.
(attributed to Don Marti)

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Old 14-06-2003, 01:32 PM
Beecrofter
 
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Default Sand sand and sand

"kcchin" wrote in message ...
I have a small garden 30meter square. I dig down and find that the top 40cm
is just plain
sand ,little or no clay or silt. Any crop I plant, the soil is only good for
one crop, next generation
are stunted and will not grow. I assume that I have exhuasted the nutrients
for that crop.
What do I do?
Cart off the top soil (in this case sand, sand) and replace it with a lorry
load of garden soil, or could
I do something else?
I have access to limitless amount of dry leaves throughout the year to use
if I choose to.
Carting off the sand and replace it with garden soil is rather expensive
here in Singapore.


Make compost
Double dig to incorporate some of the subsoil into the top again.
Fertilize.
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Old 14-06-2003, 01:44 PM
Phisherman
 
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Default Sand sand and sand

On Sat, 14 Jun 2003 14:15:23 +0800, "kcchin"
wrote:

I have a small garden 30meter square. I dig down and find that the top 40cm
is just plain
sand ,little or no clay or silt. Any crop I plant, the soil is only good for
one crop, next generation
are stunted and will not grow. I assume that I have exhuasted the nutrients
for that crop.
What do I do?
Cart off the top soil (in this case sand, sand) and replace it with a lorry
load of garden soil, or could
I do something else?
I have access to limitless amount of dry leaves throughout the year to use
if I choose to.
Carting off the sand and replace it with garden soil is rather expensive
here in Singapore.


Sandy soil is worse than clay soil, but either one can be greatly
improved using compost. Getting a load of topsoil is a quick
solution. Another solution is to plant a cactus garden or other
plants that prefer sandy soil.
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Old 14-06-2003, 02:20 PM
Paul Below
 
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Default Sand sand and sand

On Sat, 14 Jun 2003 12:43:35 GMT, Phisherman wrote:

Sandy soil is worse than clay soil, but either one can be greatly
improved using compost. Getting a load of topsoil is a quick
solution. Another solution is to plant a cactus garden or other
plants that prefer sandy soil.


Also, if you have a limited amount of compost to start with, consider
raised beds. Fill them with compost.

But since the original poster had access to lots of leaves, start
compost bins and piles and within a year would have enough material to
start digging into the garden.




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Old 14-06-2003, 02:56 PM
Tsu Dho Nimh
 
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Default Sand sand and sand

"kcchin" wrote:

I have a small garden 30meter square. I dig down and find that the top 40cm
is just plain sand ,little or no clay or silt. Any crop I plant, the soil is only good for
one crop, next generation are stunted and will not grow.
I assume that I have exhuasted the nutrients for that crop.



What do I do?
Cart off the top soil (in this case sand, sand) and replace it with a lorry
load of garden soil, or could I do something else?


I have access to limitless amount of dry leaves throughout the year to use
if I choose to.


Use the leaves, layered with green grass clippings or animal
manure if you can find it, as a very thick mulch. Pile it on,
let it settle, and plant right into the layers of mulch.

Any organic material you can find can be layered onto the
planting beds ... just keep adding layers of material. Don't
till, and if you pull weeds, let them wilt and add them to the
layers.

Also use the leaves to make a compost heap, with kitchen scraps,
grass clippings, animal manure, or other organic matter, then add
the compost to the layers.




Tsu

--
To doubt everything or to believe everything
are two equally convenient solutions; both
dispense with the necessity of reflection.
- Jules Henri Poincaré
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Old 14-06-2003, 06:08 PM
kcchin
 
Posts: n/a
Default Sand sand and sand

Thanks for response, advises taken.



"kcchin" wrote in message
...
I have a small garden 30meter square. I dig down and find that the top

40cm
is just plain
sand ,little or no clay or silt. Any crop I plant, the soil is only good

for
one crop, next generation
are stunted and will not grow. I assume that I have exhuasted the

nutrients
for that crop.
What do I do?
Cart off the top soil (in this case sand, sand) and replace it with a

lorry
load of garden soil, or could
I do something else?
I have access to limitless amount of dry leaves throughout the year to use
if I choose to.
Carting off the sand and replace it with garden soil is rather expensive
here in Singapore.




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Old 14-06-2003, 08:44 PM
Mike Lyle
 
Posts: n/a
Default Sand sand and sand

"kcchin" wrote in message ...
I have a small garden 30meter square. I dig down and find that the top 40cm
is just plain
sand ,little or no clay or silt. Any crop I plant, the soil is only good for
one crop, next generation
are stunted and will not grow. I assume that I have exhuasted the nutrients
for that crop.
What do I do?
Cart off the top soil (in this case sand, sand) and replace it with a lorry
load of garden soil, or could
I do something else?
I have access to limitless amount of dry leaves throughout the year to use
if I choose to.
Carting off the sand and replace it with garden soil is rather expensive
here in Singapore.


You've already had a lot of good advice, but I'd add one more
technique to consider.

As you have sand, it must be very well drained. This means you can use
"planting pockets": until you have enough compost to cover the whole
plot every year, you could economise on it by mixing it in only at the
precise site where you put each plant. It's rather like making a hole
in the ground and using the hole like a plant-pot. I did it with
tomatoes in Libya, and it worked very well (till the bloody goats
arrived!).

As I said, you can do this only in well-drained soil: if you did it in
heavy clay, the plants would probably die.

I wouldn't even *think* about carting off the sand: there is no soil
so bad that it can't be made into good soil if you're patient, and if
you grow mainly plants which like the conditions you have.

You should be able to make compost very quickly in Singapore,
especially if you keep a few chickens: if the supply of leaves really
is unlimited, I'd suggest having three or four heaps going at a time,
as 30 metres square is quite a big space. Your garden will be a
tropical paradise in two years!

Mike.
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Old 15-06-2003, 04:20 PM
kcchin
 
Posts: n/a
Default Sand sand and sand


"Mike Lyle" wrote in message
m...
"kcchin" wrote in message

...
I have a small garden 30meter square. I dig down and find that the top

40cm
is just plain
sand ,little or no clay or silt. Any crop I plant, the soil is only good

for
one crop, next generation
are stunted and will not grow. I assume that I have exhuasted the

nutrients
for that crop.
What do I do?
Cart off the top soil (in this case sand, sand) and replace it with a

lorry
load of garden soil, or could
I do something else?
I have access to limitless amount of dry leaves throughout the year to

use
if I choose to.
Carting off the sand and replace it with garden soil is rather expensive
here in Singapore.


You've already had a lot of good advice, but I'd add one more
technique to consider.

As you have sand, it must be very well drained. This means you can use
"planting pockets": until you have enough compost to cover the whole
plot every year, you could economise on it by mixing it in only at the
precise site where you put each plant. It's rather like making a hole
in the ground and using the hole like a plant-pot. I did it with
tomatoes in Libya, and it worked very well (till the bloody goats
arrived!).

As I said, you can do this only in well-drained soil: if you did it in
heavy clay, the plants would probably die.

I wouldn't even *think* about carting off the sand: there is no soil
so bad that it can't be made into good soil if you're patient, and if
you grow mainly plants which like the conditions you have.

You should be able to make compost very quickly in Singapore,
especially if you keep a few chickens: if the supply of leaves really
is unlimited, I'd suggest having three or four heaps going at a time,
as 30 metres square is quite a big space. Your garden will be a
tropical paradise in two years!

Mike.


That sounds a good idea, Mike, I sure would try it.
Sort of having groundlevel beds? With all the advantages of beds; No worry
of having rain wash them down.
(Well, u have goats, and I alas, have a Jack russal (daughter's)to do the
same job)





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