Great things grow under the ground. Just below our feet is a vast array of living particles and creatures, some good and not so good. We want to focus on keeping the bad out and the good migrating to our side of the yard. So listen up and take notes. This is “dirty stuff” but will keep mud off your feet and your grass growing green!
Do you ever wonder why you have more weeds than grass? Or why your plants don’t grow or look wilted? We’re here to explain some reasons why this may exist.
Soil compaction can affect…
- Plant growth
- Crop yields
- Root growth
If you were being compressed under the weight of an elephant you would lose the ability to breathe. The same goes for the underground life and plant roots. If the soil is compacted it results in poor drainage, thus the pockets holding water don’t drain fast enough and the roots rot or drown before it drains. Plants need oxygen as humans do so it would be like holding your breathe under the water for several hours. No can do. Roots also need to extend without the restriction of growth caused by soil compaction.
What causes soil compaction?
- Heavy weight or traffic
- Rainfall and gravity
- Barren ground with little plant growth
- Low organic matter
Heavy machinery of course can impact the soil composition and compression. Driving a car through your lawn or heavy equipment will not only rut up the soil but also make it susceptible to weeds. (Weeds will grow in compacted soil.) That’s is why often times you will find weeds growing on the side of a driveway where lots of traffic may slip off the edge and compact the soil. The gravity of rainfall and the compressed velocity over time can add
compression to the soil. If the soil’s surface is barren of plant material, all the more exposed it is to the force of rain from Mother Nature’s showers. Low organic matter leaves the soil without a cushion leaving it easily compactable.
If you think you’re soil might need a little “spring in it’s step”, getting your soil aerated and adding organic matter as a top dressing are the measures to take to keep it healthy and your plants and lawn green this season!