Our house is on an inclined lot and we have a stone retaining wall in front of our house that stands 3-4 feet high. The stone wall comes out 4-5 feet from the front of our home and this is what makes up our front flower beds. When the builder built our house they filled this area with sand and topped it off with mulch. The plants that were planted in the flowers beds donâ€™t seem to be getting enough water. I had a couple of landscapers come out and they gave bids to pull the existing plants and dig 1-2 feet of the sand out of the flowers beds and fill with Pro Bedding Dirt. They said that sand retains no water and can be harmful to the plants. This soil for the beds is full of sandy loam (the silly putty looking clay).
Based on what these landscapers are telling me, is this necessary? The bids they gave to do this were real high that is why I am asking. I can post pictures if you need me to.
It sounds to me like the original builders put the plants in with just mulch on top of the sand - is that correct? My first inlincation is to say "bosh! I can do that - why pay someone else to do that?" but then, I don't live there and I don't know what it looks like now....Would it be possible for you to put in shallow-rooted annuals now, and start putting in layer after layer of compost to gradually build up the soil? This would be a gradual way of doing it - and would allow you to see what will do well in that particular location, as well as building up the dirt. Or, you could haul out the sand yourself....
Where do you live, and how much sun/shade does that part of the ground receive?
Joined: Sat Jun 07, 2003 6:37 am Posts: 37 Location: Central Texas
I tend to agree with drchelo! I have some garden beds that have lots of sand and you'd be surprised what will grow there. I finally had time to add compost and topsoil to those beds myself. If you're not in a real big hurry you could amend the soil yourself and save some big bucks. I also agree with drchelo to plant some annuals and see how they do so you can get some ideas.
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