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Soil Type Plant Preferences  RSS feed

 
gardener
Posts: 789
Location: Ohio, USA
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I've found pH charts and disease charts, but I want to know what growing best in what soil type, clay leaning or sand leaning.  I did a quick search and found nothing so I thought this a good Permies thing. As gardeners, we know some things love clay, some love sand, some don't care. Some don't care, but you care when you try to harvest them. So let's chart this (if it's not already done). I will put down what I think from my experience and research. As always, results may vary and corrections/additional insights are welcome. And, yes, organic matter can mitigate any soil type, but not all of us have the luxury of starting out with that ability.

Sand Lovers
Watermelon, carrot, bulb onions, strawberries, potatoes, peppers, celery,

Clay Lovers
Brassicas, mint, lemon balm, Alpine strawberry, grass, corn, chives, garlic

Don't Care
Peas, lettuce, tomato, cucumber, most herbs, squash and gourds, asparagus, potato onions, horseradish, rhubarb,

You Want Sand
Parsnip, sweet potato, parsley root,

Thank you.
 
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Location: Vilonia, Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
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Root crops like beets, carrots, turnips, sweet potatoes, regular potatoes all like a sandy soil and will not do well in much of anything else.

Deep rooting plants like brassicas, melons, garlic, onion and most others are not really picky as long as they can get their roots down to where the water is.

Asparagus actually does want a fairly good soil to thrive in, it doesn't like to be wet all the time so a heavy clay will create rot issues with the crowns.

generally, deep rooting plants that are not root crop producers can tolerate worse soil than the root crops.

Corn is one of the heaviest feeder crops and so will like a lot of minerals to be present so it can produce ears of maize.

Most herbs want a decent soil that will drain in a few days after a rain. Rhubarb does not like clay soils, it will get root rot and die (ask me how  I know).

Redhawk
 
Amit Enventres
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Location: Ohio, USA
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Thank you RedHawk!

I just also learned yesterday peppers like loose, high organic matter soil, so do melons. Bushel gourd thrived in my heavy clay and on my fruit trees. It tried to go for the neighbor's roof too.

I think I remember radishes and many brassicas are kind of first generation colonizers, so maybe they are ok with heavy clay, but I think they do better with softer soil because they do have tap roots. Tomatoes like high organic matter, but do just fine in heavy clay. I'm on my phone, so I don't know if these are repeats. French sorrel is fine with clay or looser. My snap peas seem to have no preference. Berries seem to have no problem.

Yeah, rhubarb seems happier with sandier. I have one alive here, but on a mound.  When I worked in Sandy soils I went from one to 3 in like a year. Horse radish, despite it's big root, loves heavy clay... Or anything really.

I grew parsnip in heavy clay. Huge happy beautiful roots, lots of work to get them though!
 
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