Transform Your Dead Dirt into Healthy Soil


are your trees going in dirt or are they
growing in soil? because there’s a big difference.
dirt is dead soil is alive in most suburban landscapes that have been developed in the last 20 or 30 years we typically find dirt I’m basil I’m a treecologist here at Leaf & Limb Today I’m talking about why you should avoid using fertilizers why herbicides are dangerous and how you can create healthy soil in reality using fertilizers creates short-term gains for long term problems I’ll give you three quick examples most fertilizers have nitrogen phosphorus and potassium using nitrogen might produce a flush of growth but it’s going to handicap your tree’s root system development so you may actually have a tree with a weakened root system over time using potassium can actually pollute
our water system it’s really not necessary to use potassium here in
Raleigh North Carolina phosphorus creates all kinds of problems
but the one that’s most shocking is the fact that to produce one ton of
phosphorous creates four tons of radioactive wastes a tree needs a natural healthy soil ecosystem in which to truly get the nutrients that it needs on an ongoing basis you can’t just put stuff in the soil and expect the tree to use it the way it should be using it so if you take just one thing from this
remember that using fertilizers might give you some short-term gains but it is absolutely going to cause long-term problems another common practice is to
use herbicides in the landscape but this will actually kill the things living in
your soil so we’re back to dirt it also kills pollinators and pollinators are
very important and research is showing that herbicides potentially cause cancer in humans the key to creating healthy soil where
your trees will thrive is not using chemical inputs we can look to our ecosystems to see what happens naturally so what does nature do? well it rots and
decays leaves sticks trunks plants you name it these things become part of soil
what does it actually mean? well the organic matter feeds down into
the bottom level of the food pyramid in the soil and that provides food for
bacteria and fungi and they provide food for spring tail protozoa and they
provide food for nematodes and so on and so forth it’s a functioning food web
that lives in the soil and the bottom of that is organic matter so if we want to
create healthy soil and we want to mimic what nature does then we’ve got to get
organic matter down into our soil so ways you can do this,
leave your leaves let them decay we’ve got a whole video on this topic that you should check out put thick blankets of mulches or wood chips out every winter you can do it multiple times per year again we’ve got great videos on how to do this things you should avoid doing things you should do when you put out mulches and finally make compost, you can create fancy composts or you can just throw green wastes into the middle of four pallets stacked on their end at the end of the day creating healthy soil takes time it’s not a quick process there’s very little instant gratification but it’s really important if you want to have healthy plants that live a long happy life it’s also really important to the health of our planet there are many environmental issues that
we could solve by focusing on creating healthy soils and using less chemical inputs I hope this segment has piqued your interest
I’d love to point you the direction of books to read or articles to check out
just shoot me a note I’m happy to do so thanks

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