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What are soil amendments and what do they do?

Soil amendments are materials added to soil to improve soil structure, enhance drainage or moisture retention, adjust your soil’s pH, or add nutrients. For example, you might add peat to your soil to improve the soil structure, or you might use compost as a soil amendment to add nutrients and improve your soil’s structure.

Different types of plants like different types of soil, so there is no uniform answer regarding which soil amendments you should use. For example, azaleas like acidic soil, so you might want to mix in peat moss if a soil test shows that your soil is on the alkaline side.

Lawn grasses typically grow better in almost neutral soil. To grow healthy lawns in the acidic soils of parts of the Berkshires you may need to add lime to raise the pH.

Learn more about getting a soil test here.

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