Clay soil can be very difficult to grow in, especially if you’re not prepared to amend it and make it more hospitable for your plants.
There are a wide variety of methods out there for gardening, including the mulching method and traditional tilling/plowing.
Each has its own benefits, depending on the results you’re trying to achieve.
Today, I’m going to give you a very basic lesson regarding clay gardening and growing tomatoes in clay soil.
What Makes Clay So Hard to Grow In?
Clay is made of particles that are flat, allowing the clay to become very dense. Compacting clay (such as stepping on it, or forming it together) compounds this problem. This is why clay is excellent for making pottery.
Thus, when when planted in, plants have a difficult time sending out roots. This is even more problematic in places that are more compacted, such as areas that were once frequently trafficked or even driven on (such as an old part of the driveway, or a spot in the lawn that was frequently played in.)
If that wasn’t enough, clay planting holes can act as bowls, holding water when it rains. When you till or dig a hole for planting, the level at which you stop digging is where water will collect. Many plants don’t enjoy wet feet, but this is the nature of clay.