Working With Your Soil
Working with Clay Soil
If you have heavy clay soil, all is not lost! While difficult to work with while wet, clay soils are high in nutrients. Our Claybusters! seed mix contains the toughest wildflowers and native grasses that have been designed by nature to thrive in heavy clay soils. With good initial care, these wildflowers and grasses will flourish even on these difficult sites and, over time, the roots will move downward through the clay, opening it up and improving it.
Tip: When working with clay soil don't try tilling it in the spring when it is wet as this will compact the soil and you may get your equipment or yourself stuck in it. Instead, wait until late spring when the soil has dried out a bit before starting to prepare the land for seeding. Clay soils are best seeded in the late fall so this gives you the whole season to get the site ready.
After planting in clay soil, we recommend mulching with a light covering of weed-free straw which will help retain soil moisture. Details on mulching are on the Seeding your Meadow page.
Working with Sandy Soil
If you have light sandy soil where water just disappears, our Dry Soils seed mix is the one for you. The species in this mix were specifically selected as they thrive in dry, sandy soils. Because sand drains very quickly, the wildflowers and grasses that do best in these conditions often develop long roots that are capable of searching out water and nutrients deep below the surface.
Tip: Because sandy soils are easy to work with when it comes to ploughing and planting, and because sandy soils warm up quickly, if the site is not too weedy to start with you can sow wildflowers and native grasses in the spring as well as the fall. Please note that spring seedings will require watering which is not practical on large meadow sites. Also, as sandy soils dry out quickly, we recommend mulching with a light covering of weed-free straw which will help retain soil moisture. Details on mulching are on the Seeding your Meadow page.
Working with Loam Soil
If you have rich dark loam soil, you are one of the lucky ones! Loam is easy to work with, it drains well, while, at the same time, retaining soil moisture and it is very fertile. Our Medium Soils seed mix is a great choice for you. The species in this mix are excellent for well-drained loam, sandy loam and silty loams.
Tip: Sites with loam soils that have not been used for crops often will be quite weedy. It is very important to properly prepare the site starting in the spring. While it is not as important to mulch loam soils after planting as it is to mulch clay or sandy soils, we still recommend mulching with a light covering of weed-free straw which will help retain soil moisture. Details on mulching are on the Seeding your Meadow page.