Improve Clay Soil: Wallboard too

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Improve Clay Soil

By wildflowers
May 12, 2013

This isn't a quick fix, but if you have areas where you simply cannot garden due to the heavy clay soil, Gypsum (aka calcium sulfate) can improve the soil structure. There's no need to dig or till the gypsum in. Just add it to the top of the clay soil. The Gypsum will break up the clay on a molecular level, allowing water to permeate through. It's best to apply several applications (over a year or more) before you add your other amendments and finally begin your new garden. We've done this and I think it's worth the time. Gypsum can also be used to remove sodium from saline soils.

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Name: Terri
virginia (Zone 7a)
Beekeeper Region: Virginia Dragonflies Farmer
May 12, 2013 8:14 AM CST
Great article - I've used the wallboard scraps from putting up new walls, that also contains calcium sulfate. I just buried them on top of the hard clay layer and shoveled the looser clay back on top. It's been about 6 years now and there is no longer a lot of ponding in that spot and I've been able to actually dig down more than one foot in that area to plant things.
Life is a rush into the unknown. You can duck down and hope nothing hits you, or you can stand tall, show it your teeth and say "Dish it up, Baby, and don't skimp on the jalapeƱos."

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