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Hello. Looking for assistance in creating native landscape.

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After tinkering and studying alone, I realize why not open up to a group that has walked this path before. So here it is; I am turning a portion of my yard into a native landscape. My initial step is to mimic the native soil. So, how? What measurements do I need to quantify in order to create a similar habitat. For example, do I need to measure nematodes, protozoa, bacteria, calcium, the soil type (sand, clay, silt), pH...?

Please assist with similar projects that LIST these necessary variables. I have found plenty of resources showing peoples' projects but not detailing the practical how-to's.

Many thanks. I look forward to contributing to a fun group.

master pollinator
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Location: Officially Zone 7b, according to personal obsevations I live in 7a, SW Tennessee
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Allow me to introduce you to Dr. Redhawk's Soil Series. Quite the rescource.

As a quick recommendation, you may want to start with "getting the biology we want into our soil" from here.  My uneducated suggestion is for you to go to a forested area local to you, and dig up some soil and forest duff to bring it home. Mix it into your project area. Viola. Native bacteria and fungi. Now feed them with mulches. They will multiply.

Hopefully, Redhawk will be along soon.

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One of the most useful tools I've found is Soilweb https://casoilresource.lawr.ucdavis.edu/gmap/.  

You can find your location on the map and click the associated soil polygon, and it'll come up with a TON of information, some more esoteric than others.  The most useful thing I've found is by clicking the "description" link.  If you scroll down to "Use and Vegetation," it should provide some insight into native vegetation.  

Many state conservation agencies, and university extension programs, can provide insight on native vegetation, and may even be able to help you source native plant nurseries.  If you have a college or university nearby (within an hour), often someone in their biology, environmental science, or similar department can help field any questions, or can send you to the right person.

Good luck!
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