5 Soil Facts That We Consider on Every Landscaping Project

Although they pass over it every day, most people don’t consider just how astonishing the dirt under their feet is. For instance, more than 20,000 soil types exist in the U.S., the most common found in prairies. Also, healthy soils appear in diverse colors—blue, pink, orange, and more. Yet professional planting services have other soil facts in mind, including their ecosystems, residents, and capabilities. Such knowledge helps them provide first-rate designs to home and business owners.

If you need outstanding landscape services in Arlington, VA, turn to Northern Virginia Landscaping. Along with maintenance services like mowing and edging, we offer tree removal, patio installation, garden design, grading, and more. Our management team holds certifications in horticulture, botany, biology, and arboriculture, which help us achieve exemplary results. Contact us today for more information or to schedule an appointment.

Below, we discuss several facts about soil that influence every NV Landscaping project:

Soils are Complex, Diverse Ecosystems

Soil

We could discuss fun soil facts all day—dirt is, literally, the heart of our work. However, other details occupy us during projects. First and foremost, we’re aware that soils comprise one of the most biodiverse ecosystems on Earth.

While earthworms and insects play their parts, a greater range of organisms exists at the microscopic level. If we pulled a scoop of healthy soil from the ground and put it under a microscope, we would see more bacteria than we could count. With this fact in mind, we understand that all our landscaping decisions affect millions of lives.

Healthy Plants Require Healthy Soil and Vice Versa

One of nature’s most fascinating adaptations occurs when coexisting organisms support one another. Apart, they may die or struggle to survive; together, they flourish. This symbiotic relationship, specifically mutualism, applies to soil and the plants that grow in it.

As we all learned in biology class, plant roots absorb water and nutrients from the soil. Those same roots also exude energy from photosynthesis into the ground, replenishing the microscopic organisms there. Thus, for your garden to flourish, you need soil that supports your plants and vice versa.

This situation is one of many reasons to aerate your lawn annually. As we’ve discussed before, aerating “opens up” your yard by removing small plugs of soil from the ground. Doing so breaks up the accumulated thatch, reduces the soil’s compaction, and helps control runoff and puddling. These effects, in turn, support your soil’s health.

Soils Influence Both Water Quality and Quantity

Landscape

Not only is your soil home to millions of microorganisms, but it also affects your region’s water supply. Everything that occurs in your garden, then, influences the surrounding environment and its wildlife. Thus, hiring a professional landscaper can help you avoid contaminating the water supply or undermining the local environment.

NV Landscaping uses sustainable landscaping practices to help protect water quality. For instance, we encourage customers to choose native plants for their gardens and yards. The fact that these species naturally appear in the region signifies their importance to the ecosystem. We also recommend that homeowners manage their water usage to conserve resources.

Digging Disrupts a Soil’s Ecosystem

Traditional gardening practices call for seasonal tilling or plowing of the ground to encourage plant growth. But, as discussed above, soils host manifold microorganisms and exist in symbiotic relationships—tilling and plowing interrupt these natural processes.

Furthermore, disturbed soil releases carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, which already presents a problem in our tenuous global climate. Instead, let nature’s workers—earthworms—handle tilling. Worms can achieve the same effects if given time to carry out their natural behavior.

Moreover, we recommend mulching to encourage landscape growth, as it prevents water loss and maintains soil temperature during winter. And when our landscapers approach a garden or landscape project, they work to preserve the extant ecosystem as much as possible.

Be Patient When Trying to Improve Your Soil

In an attempt to improve your landscape’s plants, you could try improving your landscape’s soil. But doing so takes time and careful planning, so you should speak to a professional about nurturing your soil back to health.

Soils “wear out” over time if plants and microorganisms overuse their nutrient supplies. To address this, some people pour compost over the worn-out soil and expect an immediate return to health. Yet that soil formed over hundreds of years—it may require a few more before plants can flourish in it.

Gardening and Planting Services Available in Arlington, VA

Despite its obscurity, soil’s role in your landscape’s health and appearance is fundamental. So, if you want to start or refresh your home or business’s garden, turn to Northern Virginia Landscaping for professional planting services. Our expert team considers soil and climate factors when carrying out a project to ensure your satisfaction. Plus, we offer full-service landscaping options, including hardscape design and installation, drainage, and grading across Arlington, VA. Call us today at (703) 982-0100 or fill out our online form for more information.

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