I have mostly clay and very little soil. I read in the paper last week that I should add gypsum, washed river sand, and organic matter to the garden and mix it all up well. What do you recommend?
Without getting into scientific details about soils, soil structures, and the many benefits of clay soils, let me just say this. If you use the wrong type of sand and the wrong ratio, you will create concrete. And as for the gypsum, let’s just say don’t use it unless a soil test suggests that you do. Not that it would harm adding it, but just don’t at this stage. The best way to improve the clay soils in our area is to continue to add organic matter – tilling it in, mixing it with the soil when we pocket plant, and as a top dressing to break down and slowly work into the soil. Over time, and yes it takes time and does not happen over night, adding organic matter will begin to increase microbial activity, earthworm activity, drainage, and over all soil structure and tilth. Organic matter is your best friend when it comes to improving clay soils.