Landscape Contractor / Design Build Maintain

FEB 2018

LC/DBM provides landscape contractors with Educational, Imaginative and Practical information about their business, their employees, their machines and their projects.

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February 2018 27 Right When hydroseeding, soil additives such as hygroscop- ic humectants can help optimize germination and establish- ment by reducing "the drying effects in between irrigation and rainfall events," according to Jim Spindler, CPAg, CCA, CPSS, director of agronomy at Ecologel Solutions. type is cyanobacteria, which grow as chains of cells that reduce atmospheric nitrogen to plant-available am - monia, and then release it into the soil chemistry to be absorbed by plants. Agronomic product manufacturer Soil Tech manufactures, Microp, which is based on cyanobacteria as a biofertilizer soil inoculant. Amending the Soil Improving the aeration and water ab- sorption qualities of the soil is the main purpose of soil amendments. Dry peat, though it can contain two percent nitro - gen, is generally thought of as the most popular of these additives. Coir, bark and sawdust also fall into this category. A word of warning, according to Wiki - pedia, some amendments can actually harm the soil. The website references fresh sawdust, which it claims "can con - sume soil nutrients as it breaks down, and may lower soil pH." On the other hand, "others may increase the availability of nutrients through… increased growth of microorganisms that in turn increase availability of certain plant nutrients." Holding the Soil Mulch on top of the soil not only helps prevent erosion, it also reduces runoff of water, helps maintain soil structure by reducing compaction and keeps the soil warmer. Besides bark chips and shredded wood, organic mulches include leaves, straw and other semi-decomposed materi - als. Rocks, vermiculite and recycled rub- ber are examples of inorganic mulches. Mulch suppliers often offer contractors various services to aid in large jobs. SoCal Mulch in Riverside County, California has a blower truck that can deliver up to 40 cubic yards, and apply that amount in around two hours. Green's Best, in California's Central Valley, provides bulk loading at their facility and will create a custom mix of their various products as requested. The list of beneficial soil additives does not end here, as there are many other types of nutrients, amendments, inocu - lants and more to help ensure healthy soil composition. LC DBM PHOTO: FINN CORPORATION I n f o r m a t i o n R e q u e s t # 5 1 7

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