Beewatching’s Blog

While you wait for warmer weather
February 27, 2009, 2:57 pm
Filed under: 1, environment, Garden, Growing things, weather

Around the time we seed starters are starting our seeds is a good time to consider getting a soil test, or maybe two. Before amending the soil, we need to know what it lacks, or perhaps what it has in too much abundance. A few years ago, a previous homeowner, in a quest for a lush lawn, spread a large quantity of lime. A neighbor told me it looked as if it had snowed in the front yard. Only now, over six years later, am I able to successfully grow the acid loving ground cover that I prefer to a small scrap of indifferent grass. In fact, that “negative enhancement” of lime was too much even for the grass to thrive! I made the initial mistake of planting before testing. Now I know better. After applications of compost and peat moss, the wintergreen, sweetbox, hellebore, liriope and other ground covers look a lot happier.

How to get soil tested: contact your local cooperative extension for a kit, usually $10-20 for the basic tests. Results usually arrive a couple weeks after you mail off your bag of soil.

A few dollars now, or perhaps many dollars and much frustration later — having tried both ways, I know which I’d choose.


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