Soil is a mixture of rock, sand, clay, decaying organic matter, minerals, fungi and manure. It’s far more than just dirt under our feet or something where vegetation grows. Soil supports life as it plays a crucial role in the earth’s ecosystem and is a critical part of human existence.
Soil is referred to as “the skin of the earth” and has many benefits including:
- Provides agriculture.
- Anchor’s roots to plant life — supplying oxygen.
- Provides a habitat for billions of organisms and helps biodiversity, supporting most antibiotics used to fight diseases.
- Holds necessary nutrients for vegetation to grow.
- Filters rainwater, protects groundwater quality and regulates overflow to prevent flooding
- A cache for carbon.
- Supports foundation’s of man made structures and helps manufacture resources.
- Shows history of past environmental conditions.
Soil consists of 6 layers (also called horizons) and when put together they form a soil profile. A soil profile is the side view of soil, from top to bottom layer. The type of soil, or name of the soil, depends on the percentage of sand, clay, gravel, and rock that is mixed in with organic materials. There are 6 layers that exist in a soil profile:
- 1st Layer (topsoil): made from fresh soil and decaying matter. Colors range from brown to black.
- 2nd Layer: composed of decomposing organic matter. Colors range from brown to gray.
- 3rd Layer: consists of sand and silt. By this point, it has lost most of its nutrients. Light brown in color.
- 4th Layer: comprised clay and large rocks. Colors range from rust to tan.
- 5th Layer: is made of bedrock and gray in color.
- 6th Layer: composed of rock and gray in color.
With over 1,300 types of soil found in here in Texas, there’s a huge amount of variations within the soil. Our soils are complex due to our wide diversity of climate, geology, landscape and vegetation.
4 Types of San Antonio Soil:
- Stoney Clay: consists of clay, stones and rocks.
- Gravelly Clay: comprised of clay, pieces of pebbles and small rocks. In this type of soil, clay helps to retain water, while the gravel helps with drainage. Clay will hold nutrients and gravel will not. These factors depend on the ratio of gravel to clay which very on location.
- Clay Loam: a soil mixture that contains more clay than other types of rock, silt or minerals. Loam’s the favored soil for gardeners due to its balance of sand, silt and clay.
- Silt Loam: Silt a naturally occurring loose sedimentary material with very tiny rock particles. This type of soil usually contains no less than 70% silt and clay and no less than 20% sand.
These soil types vary depending on your location in San Antonio. Check out this map to see what soil type is most common in your area.
A soil test will help you with the type of soil you’ll need for your next project. It will help you to determine what you need to add or mix into your soil to make the best environment possible for your plant life.
To learn more about soil in San Antonio click here.
Gardening and Planting Soil:
Your taste in landscaping might be flowers, a vegetable garden or beautiful green lawn, although the common denominator is SOIL. If you don’t take time to identify your soil type, your gardening results could be unrewarding. Plants require nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, copper and proper pH. Good, nutrient rich soil is the secret to healthy plants and vegetables, and the more you understand about the soil on your property, the more successful it will be.
In order to be successful with your garden or plants you must understand this is a science. Knowing how much nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium and other critical nutrients are in soil (including pH) – will determine your harvest. Different veggies and different trees require different ratios of these essential nutrients in order for them to fully flourish. Some thrive in sandy clay, whereas others flourish in silt loam.
Our San Antonio Soils.
Urban Soil specializes in a wide variety premium soil blends. Each soil’s designed to provide maximum performance in a specific setting. All soils are blended to provide optimum organic matter, moisture retention and nutrient retention. Soils should be selected by the type of area and plant materials that will be planted.
- Enriched Topsoil: a ½’’ screened soil made from a blend of compost and loam soils. It’s a general use soil great for shrubs, perennials and turf.
- 4-Way Soil: a ½’’ screened soil made from loam soils, compost and sand. It is designed for raised bed applications where drainage is more important. It’s excellent for shrubs, perennials, annuals, veggies and some turf applications.
- Garden Soil: a ½’’ screened soil made from loam soils, sand and compost. It has a specific ratio of each ingredient to provide superior drainage, moisture retention and nutrient retention. Veggies demand a lot of water and nutrients, this soil will help maximize moisture retention and nutrient retention, resulting in less of a need for water and fertilizer.
Our soils are formulated to support long lasting, sustainable and beautiful landscapes and gardens. Our expertise in arboriculture and horticulture means we know what your garden and landscaping needs to thrive in our hot Texas climate.
We will blend any of our specialty soils to meet your needs. Specialty soil mixes may include Bio Swale media, Bio Retention media, soils for managing heavy clay areas and aquatic media or any other design specific soil mix.
We offer soil delivery for large and small projects throughout South Texas. Contact us today to discuss your next project.