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The Pros & Cons of Sandy Soils

16-Nov-2013 | Contributed by: Guest Author

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Sandy Soil

The lightest of all soil types, sandy soil is easy to work with and well drained. It has a tendency to dry out over summer. Sandy soils feel gritty to touch.

Pros of sandy soil

  • Sandy soil warms up early after winter, and is suitable for growing early season crops.

  • Sandy soils are ideal for keeping sheep or pigs.

  • Easy to cultivate.

  • The soil is warm and well aerated.

Cons of sandy soil

  • Sandy soil is often acidic, so usually needs liming.

  • Sandy soil is often phosphate and nitrogen deficient.

  • Requires large amounts of organic manure to increase productivity.

  • Cannot grow heavy crops.

  • Dry out quickly and suffers in periods of drought.

  • Retain few nutrients, which means regular fertiliser is required.

What to grow in sandy soil

  • Tulips
  • Cabbage
  • Cauliflower
  • Hibiscus
  • Lettuce
  • Carrots
  • Parsnips
  • Tomatoes
  • Onions
  • Potatoes

Tips for working with sandy soil


  • Increase your sandy soil's productivity with the addition of organic matter.

  • Mulch to prevent erosion.

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