During the coldest months of the year, in winter, the gardens go into a type of hibernation. It is then that we must prepare the ground for the next season when the cold begins to end. A good method to regain vitality and fertilize the soil of our garden or garden is through the use of topsoil.
You do not know what it is? In this case, I recommend that you continue reading this article, as we will explain what topsoil is, what it is for and how we can prepare it ourselves at home.
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What is topsoil and what is it for?
When we talk about topsoil, also known as topsoil, we refer to the part of the biotope in which certain living beings carry out their vital functions. This serves as the basis of nutrition for other organisms. Normally, topsoil is a mixture of natural soil, sand, and compost. This mix is usually completely adapted for any type of crop or plantation that we have in our orchard or garden.
Among the characteristics of the topsoil stands out above all the humic part that is essential for a plant to grow properly. In addition, this type of substrate helps to generate consistency for vegetables. The use of topsoil is usually recommended, especially in areas where there are shrub or tree plantations, among others.
Apart from the benefits that we have mentioned so far, topsoil also allows good water drainage while having a greater ability to retain moisture. Another aspect to highlight is the good aeration of the soil provided by this substrate. Nor can we forget that it is a very rich land in both organic matter and minerals. By means of the nutrients it contains, the topsoil provides the necessary nutrition so that the plants can grow and develop correctly.
How much does topsoil cost?
When it comes to deciding if we want to add this nutritious plant substrate to the soil of our garden or garden, we always end up wondering how much this type of soil can cost. Obviously, the price may vary according to the quantity, the brand and the place of purchase. Such is the difference that prices can range between € 20 and € 50 for every 50 liters of topsoil. In the event that it seems too expensive or we do not want to spend so much money on land, we always have the option of preparing topsoil on our own.
How is topsoil prepared?
When preparing topsoil at home, we must know what this type of substrate has and what the proportions are. To carry out this task, we will need dry leaves, yerba mate, uncooked vegetable remains, tea, small branches and citrus peel. Of these ingredients, the most important are the remains of pruning, roots, leaves and branches. To achieve a suitable ratio, two parts of the total should be dry leaves and one part fresh waste. In addition, we can include freshly cut grass, but it should not contain flowers or seeds.
In nature there is also topsoil. It is usually the top layer of the soil, which is of plant origin. This is created by the degradation of organic matter that ends up accumulating in the soil. It usually occupies the top ten centimeters of the earth. As the components of this substrate are plant waste, the soil ends up being very fertile and rich. To get large amounts of leaves, we can wait until autumn, which is when the trees lose them and end up covering the ground.
How long does it take to prepare the vegetable substrate?
Because the decomposition of organic matter is slow, This entire process can take up to a year. In order to use this plant substrate throughout the year, it is best to store parts in different containers. These containers should have holes so that the waste pile can be aerated.
Once we have obtained the vegetable substrate, we can pass it through a sieve to make it finer. The sieve is basically a tool whose purpose is to separate the thickest parts from the finest. Once the process is finished, the vegetable substrate can be used both for sowing and for mixing it with other components such as, for example, perlite, peat, etc.
There are some tricks to speed up the decomposition process. If we periodically wet the waste pile, we can get vegetable substrate in less than a year. It is usually enough to leave the waste pile in the open air and let it get wet with the rains. There is also the possibility of use chemical accelerators, such as, for example, ammonium sulfate.
The vegetable substrate is, without a doubt, one of the best options to feed our plants, and it is very easy to prepare, it only requires a little patience.