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Old 06-14-2010, 01:49 PM
 
Location: SE Michigan
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how do you use Gypsum to admend clay soil in an establish flower bed?

I read the direction on bag... it addressed brand new flower beds, around trees and shrubs, new lawns and established lawn.

I would like to admend for an established pererinial flower bed before I add mulch.

thanks
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Old 06-14-2010, 05:14 PM
 
Location: SE Michigan
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No one have any advice?

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Old 06-14-2010, 09:00 PM
 
Location: Albemarle, NC
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Gypsum breaks down the clay structure chemically. You can spread it out just like you would fertilizer or lime. It will not adjust the pH of the soil, but will improve drainage. I wouldn't use it alone. I'd spread some organic stuff over the top of it. It will work its way into the soil, but scratching the surface after spreading it will be better.
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Old 06-14-2010, 10:37 PM
 
Location: SE Michigan
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^
thank you

so should I match the picture on Miracle Grow and other fertilizers that show how much fertilizer should be placed in relation to the size of a dime? The dime is illustrated in real size for reference in directions for miracle grow.

and I would guess that organic compost such as mushroom compost covering the gypsum and applied to freshly scratched flower bed, then a good watering and cover with mulch would work?

I am totally newbie and enthusiastic at that, and need someone to hold my hand so sorry if I irritate with all these stupid questions.

Last edited by kcam213; 06-14-2010 at 10:38 PM.. Reason: clarifying
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Old 06-15-2010, 08:23 AM
 
Location: Albemarle, NC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kcam213 View Post
^
thank you

so should I match the picture on Miracle Grow and other fertilizers that show how much fertilizer should be placed in relation to the size of a dime? The dime is illustrated in real size for reference in directions for miracle grow.

and I would guess that organic compost such as mushroom compost covering the gypsum and applied to freshly scratched flower bed, then a good watering and cover with mulch would work?

I am totally newbie and enthusiastic at that, and need someone to hold my hand so sorry if I irritate with all these stupid questions.
Gypsum here is sold as a powder. I would just broadcast it across the beds and cover it with some organic stuff. Compost is fine. Mulch is fine. Topsoil is fine. I use shredded leaves in the fall and work it in a bit in the spring when I'm planting or moving things.

What kind of mulch will you be using? I don't mulch. I only use shredded leaves. They break down faster than wood mulch and the earthworms love them.
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Old 06-15-2010, 11:32 AM
 
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
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If you are new maybe what you have already planted can be dug up in the fall, put in temporary pots in the shade while you prepare your bed properly. Tilling in all that stuff will work so much better than a scratch.

Good soil prep at the beginning is worth all the extra work. It is too late to plant much now anyway and so much more pleasant in the fall or winter.
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Old 06-15-2010, 09:41 PM
 
Location: SE Michigan
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No I already have an established flower bed. Some hardy mums, daylillies, spring bulbs, and I just planted some hostas.

I just found out about gypsum when I bought the hostas. So I will try to broadcast it.

Will it hurt the plants if the material hit the plants leaves? How do you "broadcast"? I used to have one of those push things that you could use to fertilize grass. Do they have hand held spreaders?

I am also considering adding to my lawn because it is really struggling and I think it is because of poor soil not allowing the grass absorb the water due to dense soil.

I am using mulch wood chips, mixed species. I was looking for aesthetics, not for organic reasons. I think the mulch is a mix of Cyprus, pine and... maybe birch?? Not sure.
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Old 06-15-2010, 09:43 PM
 
Location: SE Michigan
1,213 posts, read 4,239,816 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paperhouse View Post
Gypsum here is sold as a powder. I would just broadcast it across the beds and cover it with some organic stuff. Compost is fine. Mulch is fine. Topsoil is fine. I use shredded leaves in the fall and work it in a bit in the spring when I'm planting or moving things.

What kind of mulch will you be using? I don't mulch. I only use shredded leaves. They break down faster than wood mulch and the earthworms love them.
The gypsum I found looked like granules sort of like the consistency of fertilizer except the color is like concrete.

The mulch I will use is a wood chip mixed species.
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