Improving Drainage - Knowledgebase Question

san diego, CA
Question by DAS26
January 12, 1998
Water simply sits on the surface of the soil in our garden. What can we do to improve the drainage?


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Answer from NGA
January 12, 1998

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Doesn't sound as though you have any organic matter in your garden bed. You can improve things greatly by adding compost or putting a layer of organic matter like peatmoss, leaves and grass clippings on your soil and working it in before planting in the spring. Organic matter adds bulk which will help absorb and retain moisture and provide nutrients to plant roots as it breaks down. Planting a cover crop in the fall will also help break up the surface of the soil and protect it from erosion during rains. The added bonus of cover crops is that when they are turned under in the spring, they'll help improve the texture of the soil. It may take a few years, but eventually you'll have loamy garden soil that will absorb water and produce terrific flowers and vegetables.

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