What Is the Difference Between Soil and Topsoil?

You are ready to create a beautiful yard for the summer. You envision beautiful flowers, bushes and maybe even vegetables lining a lush green yard, and you are excited about starting the planting process. While planting may seem simple and all dirt may seem the same, it is important that you choose the appropriate soil for the job. There are many more options than you may think, and a good soil base is the foundation for thriving plants.

Different soils serve different purposes, and it is necessary to distinguish soils when browsing the garden options. While soil and topsoil may seem like all the same, they have very different compositions and purposes, and you need to understand their functions.

There are a variety of potting and garden soils. The garden soil sold in stores is very similar to the soil that already exists around your home. Your home soil is made up of a diverse combination of clay, sand, and silt. Many plants can grow successfully in the soil that already stands in your garden, but some plants require a specific combination of ingredients to thrive. Therefore, prepackaged or bulk sold soil can be used to add a wider variety of plants to your garden. Flower gardens, herb gardens, and vegetable gardens all require different blends of ingredients to be successful.

As you begin to consider the type of soil you want to purchase, you need to make sure that your selection can be easily combined with and integrated into your garden’s existing soil. It is highly inadvisable to entirely replace the natural soil that is already present. Instead, you want to find a selection that enhances the present mix to help adapt the soil to your needs.

Potting soil is a little different than garden soil and is specifically designed to help your potted plants flourish. Potted soil is designed to compact more effectively and provide optimal moisture retention. Typically this type of soil has been sterilized to prevent the contamination by bacteria. Finally, potted soils are designed to support specific exotic or delicate plants like orchids or African violets.

Topsoil, as its name suggests, is the top layer of earth on the surface of your garden. Unlike planting soils, it is not comprised of a specific set of ingredients. It is frequently extracted from the top layer of weed fields and then mixed with manure, compost or sand. Topsoil should not be used alone, but serves as an aid in maintaining the underlying earth. When choosingtopsoil, you want to avoid those with heavy sand, clay or silt content, as they do not drain efficiently and can leave your plants with too much moisture.

Overall, you want to make sure that you have the correct combination of soil and topsoil when creating your garden. For more information on how to buy soil in San Jose, visit this website.


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