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Old 09-27-2008, 01:07 PM
 
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What type of sand do I need to ammend clay soil? Is builder's sand good enough? My husband has some left over after doing brick work in our house, please advise, and thank you,
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Old 09-27-2008, 01:35 PM
 
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To do a really bang up job of amending your clay, you will need to add some organic matter as well as sand. Adding peat and some good compost will go a long way in creating a good loam. The compost has the added benefit of attracting earthworms which are Mother Nature's natural soil aerators. I would ask a local nurseryman what he would recommend for your area.
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Old 09-27-2008, 02:05 PM
 
Location: The Wild Wild West
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Get playsand or some type of washed sand. Mortar sand usually has a lot of lime and accumulated salts in it which is not good for plants.
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Old 09-27-2008, 03:01 PM
 
Location: WA
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Sand and clay can result in a type of rock with the clay particles holding the sand particles... don't add sand to clay! Clay should be amended with large quantities of organic matter. Use the sand for something else or give it away.
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Old 09-27-2008, 03:22 PM
 
Location: The Wild Wild West
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Ideal growing soil is a mixture of 1/3 screened washed sand, 1/3 organic matter like mulch, peatmoss or humus and 1/3 screened clay soil...This makes for ideal loamy soil for growing most anything.
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Old 09-27-2008, 05:06 PM
 
Location: Newport, NC
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tests at PSU have shown that the soil must be at least 80% sand to overcome the problems associated with clay soil. Then you have to deal with the problems of a sandy soil - for example, no water retention. Their recommendation for improving soil quality is to add compost (organic matter) to both sandy or clay soil.
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Old 09-30-2008, 07:00 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nitram View Post
Get playsand or some type of washed sand. Mortar sand usually has a lot of lime and accumulated salts in it which is not good for plants.
I have to differ here...I have been told Never to use what is called "Play Sand" It is not coarse enough and will clump up and be a disaster.. I have always used "Builders Sand" with no problems.. I even add it to my houseplant soil to help drainage. But I think organic material is really better for clay soil...
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Old 09-30-2008, 08:24 AM
 
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If you just add sand to amend clay soil you will wind making the soil like concrete. You really need organic matter.
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Old 09-30-2008, 08:26 AM
 
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Default This is absolutely correct...

Quote:
Originally Posted by cdelena View Post
Sand and clay can result in a type of rock with the clay particles holding the sand particles... don't add sand to clay! Clay should be amended with large quantities of organic matter. Use the sand for something else or give it away.
Quote:
Originally Posted by grannynancy View Post
If you just add sand to amend clay soil you will wind making the soil like concrete. You really need organic matter.
They're right!

Don't add sand to clay soil...

Compost, Peat Moss, Manure, Coffee Grounds, Perlite... anything BUT sand!
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Old 09-30-2008, 03:49 PM
 
Location: The Wild Wild West
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trudeyrose View Post
I have to differ here...I have been told Never to use what is called "Play Sand" It is not coarse enough and will clump up and be a disaster.. I have always used "Builders Sand" with no problems.. I even add it to my houseplant soil to help drainage. But I think organic material is really better for clay soil...
Play sand is just washed screened sand and is what we recommend in our area for ideal planting. Sand does not need to be coarse for proper draining. It just needs to be mixed in the right proportions with soil and humus.
Builder's sand is what kind of sand are you talking about. Here builders sand is generally for mortaring which causes clumping and is loaded with lime.
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