What are the characteristics of clay soil

What soil do you have in the garden?

Do you know whether you have clay, loam, sand or bog soil in your garden? It can be found out with a hand sample. You can read everything about soil types, problem soils and soil improvement here.


You can find devices for soil improvement in specialist shops. You can also borrow expensive equipment such as milling machines or cultivators.

Is the soil in your garden dense and can it hardly be digged? Then her problem child is probably called Tonboden. Or is it all sandy, disintegrates when planted and can hardly store water? Then you are dealing with a sandy bottom. Are your plants stunted and unable to develop properly? Then it is time to get a green thumb, or maybe to get to grips with your problem floor. You don't need a laboratory to determine the nature of the soil and soil in your garden. This can be seen quite reliably with a hand sample. Here is an overview of the most important types of soil and their typical properties.

  • Sandy soil is light, fine-grained and not very fertile.
  • Clay soil is the ideal substrate for the garden. Many hobby gardeners classify it incorrectly because they mistake it for the clay soil. A loamy soil, mostly with sand, stores nutrients and water without the risk of waterlogging. Clay soil can be corrected relatively quickly by adding sand or compost. Clay soil has a good crumb structure when taken in hand.
  • Clay soil cannot be improved in this way like clay soil. Clay soil is heavier and more impermeable to water, compacted and poses an acute risk of waterlogging. This is critical for sensitive roots, as this type of soil is difficult to warm up. Figures can be effortlessly formed from clay by hand.
  • Peatland rarely occurs in our gardens, it is peat soil with a high proportion of organic material, i.e. dead and rotted plant residues, but only few nutrients. The soil reaction is acidic, which only heather plants and azaleas (rhododendrons) get from our garden plants. When pressed together, peatland feels as elastic as a sponge.

Problem: soil fatigue

Gardeners understand this phenomenon to mean that the soil has become depleted, ie "tired", as a result of severe depletion due to the cultivation of always the same type of plant. As a countermeasure, one must ensure an increased crop rotation. In addition, you should make sure that you alternate between heavily consuming plants that need more humus, compost and manure, and weakly consuming plants that do without it, but need lime.

Proper watering helps immensely

Trees, bushes and lawns need a lot of water in extreme heat. It should be poured in the evening or early in the morning. The garden hose as a semi or fully automatic irrigation is becoming more and more popular. It does not matter whether the garden areas are flat or hilly, small or large. The water distribution can be precisely controlled and calculated using modern computer technology. Fully automatic systems are usually permanently installed, the pipes are made of UV-resistant plastics and are suitable for more than decades of use. The water is either taken from the mains, which means that water extraction and water disposal costs are incurred at the same time. With the installation of underground tanks made of high-strength fiberglass materials, all rainwater can be collected and, if necessary, removed for irrigation by means of pumps. Such containers are weather and acid-resistant, guaranteed to be leak-proof, and are also easy to move.