1/7/2013Out of the Wilds and Into Your Garden                                                                             ...
1/7/2013Tests for sandy soil: sedimentation test                    The sedimentation         Sand Layer: settles in 1-2 ...
1/7/2013                  Challenges of local sandy soils                                                           Benefi...
1/7/2013  2. Group your plants according to Water Zones                                                                   ...
1/7/2013      This yard has some natural Water Zones                                                                      ...
1/7/2013          Areas with plants adapted to sandy soils                                                                ...
1/7/2013Contouring for water management and                                                                This yard has s...
1/7/2013 Salty Susan is one of several local native                                                                       ...
1/7/2013      Grow Salty Susan with other local natives                                                     Local native p...
1/7/2013….and don’t forget our annual wildflowers                                                                         ...
1/7/2013        Hairy Gumplant - an herbaceous perennial                                                                  ...
1/7/2013                                                                               Coastal Groundcover Gum Plant      ...
1/7/2013   Watering in sandy soils is different                                              How fast is the drainage in y...
1/7/2013                                                                                                                  ...
1/7/2013   Desert Mallow is easy…                                                                           Soils:       ...
1/7/2013                                                                                                            Perhap...
1/7/2013             Chaparral Mallow – Malacothamnus fasciculatus                                                        ...
Sandy soil gardening - notes
Sandy soil gardening - notes
Sandy soil gardening - notes
Sandy soil gardening - notes
Sandy soil gardening - notes
Sandy soil gardening - notes
Sandy soil gardening - notes
Sandy soil gardening - notes
Sandy soil gardening - notes
Sandy soil gardening - notes
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Sandy soil gardening - notes

  1. 1. 1/7/2013Out of the Wilds and Into Your Garden Gardening on Sand Gardening with Western L.A. County Native Plants August 1st & 4th 2009 Project SOUND - 2009 © Project SOUND © Project SOUND What is a sandy soil? Our mission: to make this garden more water-wise  Soil: a combination of sand, silt, clay, minerals and organic matter that also contains some air and water.  Clay soils are sometimes referred to as heavy soils and sandy soils are called http://www.soilsensor.com/soiltypes.aspx light.  Sandy soils contain high proportions (60% or more) of larger (sand) particles. Many ‘sandy soils’ are actually sandy loams – wonderful garden soilshttp://chiotsrun.com/2009/04/28/the-balance-of-nature-growing-soil/ © Project SOUND © Project SOUND http://www.your-healthy-gardens.com/soil.html 1
  2. 2. 1/7/2013Tests for sandy soil: sedimentation test The sedimentation  Sand Layer: settles in 1-2 minutes process  Allow suspended soil to settle for about a minute.  Fill a quart jar 2/3 full with  Mark the side of the jar at the top of water the layer that has settled out.  Add dry soil (break up clods)  Silt Layer: settles in 1 hour until water is within 1” of top  Set jar aside, being careful not to mix of jar. the sand layer; wait ~ an hour.  Mark the top of the Silt Layer on the  Put the lid on the jar and side of the jar. shake it energetically until  Clay layer: settles in ~24 hours everything is swirling around.  Set jar aside, being careful not to shake Then set it aside and let it or mix the layers that have settled out. settle, and mark layers until  After 24 hours, or when the water is the water clears. clear (more or less), mark the jar at the The percentage of top of the clay layer.  The layers indicate just how each layer tells you much sand, silt and clay make what kind of soil you  Most of the organic matter will be up your soil. have. floating on the top of the water © Project SOUND © Project SOUND Sandy Soils  Are also common in Southern Loam Soils California, particularly in the valleys and flat areas (flood  Sandy soils are found throughout plains) surrounding rivers and Southern California, but are very streams. common near the mountain foothills, along rivers and  Loam soils are typically streams, in desert areas and comprised of approximately 25 certain coastal areas. - 50% sand, 30 - 50% silt and  Sandy soils are typically 10 - 30% clay by volume. comprised of approximately 80 - 100% sand, 0 - 10% silt and 0 -  Loam soils are somewhat 10% clay by volume. heavier than sandy soils  Sandy soils are light and typically  Tend to be fairly free draining, very free draining, usually again, due to typically low holding water very poorly due to very low organic content. organic content.  You may want to concentrate on  A wide range of plants grow plants that thrive in sandy soils well in loamy soils 1:1:1 soils © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 2
  3. 3. 1/7/2013 Challenges of local sandy soils Benefits of sandy soils  Poor moisture retention: Because it retains moisture poorly, plants in sandy soil suffer from  Easier to plant in drying out quickly  Heat stress: Sandy soil does not moderate heat  Harder to overwater; less as well as other soils. It heats up quickly during the day and cools rapidly at night, stressing susceptible to ‘El Nino plants and making it difficult for tender seedlings disasters’ to thrive.  Infertility: Sandy soil usually does not contain much organic matter, and what is there breaks  Roots grow easily in loose down more quickly than it does in other types of soils http://www.self-sufficient-home.com/166- sandy-garden-soil.html soil, especially in warm climates. Soluble nutrients quickly leach out with rain and irrigation.  Some native plants areFortunately, native plants  pH: coastal and desert sands may be alkali specifically adapted tofrom sandy soil regions (pH > 8.0)are well adapted to all of  Rooting: Takes a while for roots to gain enough sandy or rocky soils – thesethese conditions ‘purchase’ to support larger plants will thrive in your sandy soil! © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 1. Plant with the rains in sandy soils Keys to succeeding with sandy soils  Why plant with the rains?  Saves water – soils are naturally moist 1. Plant with the rains during the critical first few months 2. Use the Water Zone system to group  Vulnerable plants get the best water plants possible 3. Choose appropriate plants  Vulnerable plants are not exposed to temperature extremes 4. Start out with small plants  Soils are well-saturated – promotes 5. Mulch – with appropriate mulch deep/wide root growth 6. Water correctly; monitor  Coincides with native plant’s normal 7. If fertilizing, low dose & more often growth cycle; plants are primed to grow at this time © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 3
  4. 4. 1/7/2013 2. Group your plants according to Water Zones Gardens in Mediterranean climates (including S. CA) have three Water Zones  Zone 1 – no supplemental water; soils are dry in summer/fall. May or may not be planted.  Zone 2 – occasional summer water; soil is allowed to dry out between waterings  Zone 3 – regular water; soil is usually moist to soggy, even in summer. © Project SOUND © Project SOUND The secret of a water-wise garden is to prioritize water Your Water Zone plan directs many other needs and group plants with similar requirements decisions in your garden plan Regular water  Choice of plants  Soil amending (if any)Pretty drydrought-tolerant  Use/type of mulchplants  Frequency of watering  Type of ‘irrigation system’ ‘Water-wise’ ; occasional summer water http://www.taunton.com/finegardening/pages/g00101.asp © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 4
  5. 5. 1/7/2013 This yard has some natural Water Zones Amending sandy soils: yes or no?  The best way to amend is with composted organic material  Good/necessary choice for:  Vegetable gardens  Non-native plants  Problems (for native plants)  May change soil pH  Increases nutrient levels – may be too high for many natives Zone 3 – regularly  Not needed – many natives are watered fine with most local sandy soils © Project SOUND © Project SOUND Selective amendment for special areas 3. Choose plants that thrive in sandy soils  Raised beds for vegetable gardens  Planters & pots  Selective amendment of Zone 3 bedshttp://my.kitchengardeners.org/profile/PeterGleason http://www.floridata.com/tracks/transplantedgardener/composting.cfm © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 5
  6. 6. 1/7/2013 Areas with plants adapted to sandy soils Beach Bluffs Restoration Project  Local areas:  Coastal strand/sandy bluffs  Coastal Prairie/shrubland  Southern coast (San Diego Co.) & Baja  Northern coast  Particularly good for groundcover plants  Plants will need a little extra water  S. CA deserts © Project SOUND © Project SOUND Coastal Marsh plants are Zone 2 to 3 plants Strand/Bluff plants: Zone 1 with some dry-season fog; unique to our low-lying coastal area many are OK with Zones 1 to 2 in sandy soilshttp://www.tijuanaestuary.com/beaches.asp  Dune Buckwheat  Deervetch  CA poppy http://www.bcdc.ca.gov/pdf/planning/SPLG.pdf  as well as some low-lying plants found mostly quite near the shore:  Many unique plants that can tolerate sandy soils, salt spray &  Red Sand Verbena saltwater, flooding  Silver Beach Burr  Characteristics: short, spreading; mostly herbaceous perennials;  Pacific Cinquefoil can be used alone or as mixed groundcovers  others listed for ‘seaside conditions’ © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 6
  7. 7. 1/7/2013Contouring for water management and This yard has some natural Zone 3 areasconservation  Small elevation changes (1-3 ft.) in a landscape can work Could capture more water from the roof wonders:  Provide a greater range of Water Zones: high areas will be drier – low areas wetter  Allow local native plants to be grown in clay soils – provide better drainage  Allow good use of seasonal rainfall – channel rainwater into Zone 3 – regularly depressions (water gardens) or watered swales © Project SOUND © Project SOUND Salty Susan/ Fleshy Jaumea – Jaumea carnosa Salty Susan/ Marsh Jaumea – Jaumea carnosa  Coastal region from British Columbia to N. Baja  Always found in marshy or moist places:  Margins of coastal salt marshes and tidal flats where there is protection from wave action  Coastal strand  Bases of sea cliffs  Named after Jean Henri Jaume Saint-Hilaire (1772- http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_JM_treatment.pl?609,1464,1465 1845), a French botanist & artist who was interested in practical uses of native plants http://www.coloradolagoon.org/focl/gallery.html © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 7
  8. 8. 1/7/2013 Salty Susan is one of several local native The flowers are a surprise! coastal groundcovers  Size:  Blooms: spring/summer; usually May-Sept in W. L.A. County  low – generally < 1 ft tall  spreading to 3-5+ ft wide  Flowers:  Typical for Sunflower family –  Growth form: many flowers in heads  Low, herbaceous perennial  Both ray & disk flowers are groundcover bright yellow  Plants are dioecious –  Foliage: separate male & female plants  Fleshy, succulent  Great nectar & pollen source –  gray-green or blue-green color attracts many insects  Leaves narrow – somewhat like some iceplants  Seeds:  Small – Sunflower-like – on  Roots: female plants Gerald and Buff Corsi © California Academy of Sciences  Spreads via rhizomes  Eaten by birdshttp://farm4.static.flickr.com/3589/3592688234_cc697124da.jpg?v=0 © Project SOUND © Project SOUND http://www.westernwildflower.com/plant%20index.htmSalty Susan grows on  Soils: Salty Susan is a true  Texture: sandy to clay native groundcover marsh edges  pH: any local including alkali (pH > 8.0)  Fine with salty soils, seaside  A replacement for Ice Plant on conditions; roots exclude salt sandy soils, banks  Light: full sun  In naturally wet areas of the  Water: garden  Winter: needs goo winter http://www.land8lounge.com/profile/JeremySison  Low spots that get very moist water – takes some flooding in winter  Summer: likes a moist soil best – Water Zones 2 to 3  Under birdbath; near ponds  Would be fine with sprinkler  Edges of irrigated areas overflow, or water from a neighbor’s yard  As an unusual pot/planter plant  Fertilizer: none needed; likes  As an excellent addition to a © 2008 R.C. Brody poor soils, but light fertilizer coastal habitat garden won’t kill it © Project SOUND © Project SOUND http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3026/2845181216_985fa34707.jpg?v=0 8
  9. 9. 1/7/2013 Grow Salty Susan with other local natives Local native plants from Coastal Prairie/scrublands associates for a mixed goundcover are naturals for Zone 1 to 2  Grasses:  Saltgrass – Distichlis spicata  Thingrass – Agrostis pallens  Carex (sedge) species  Perennial creepers:  Stachys (Woodmints)  Achillea (Yarrow)  Artemisias  Fragaria (strawberry)  And others (see Sandy Soils Zone 3 – regularly list) wateredhttp://www.calflora.net/bloomingplants/marshjaumea.html © Project SOUND © Project SOUND Use the Preserve & gardens as sources of inspiration Many local native grasses thrive on sandy soils… Thin grass – Agrostis pallens © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 9
  10. 10. 1/7/2013….and don’t forget our annual wildflowers Hairy (Coastal) Gumplant – Grindelia hirsutula Fiddlenecks Coastal Tidytips Blue Dicks Redmaids Goldfields Miniature Lupine © 2005 Doreen L. Smith © Project SOUND Grindelia hirsutula var. hirsutula © Project SOUND Hairy (Coastal) Gumplant – Grindelia hirsutula Hairy (Coastal) Gumplant – Grindelia hirsutula  Var. hisutula – coastal, including western L.A. Co., coast near Santa Monica Mtns. var. hirsutula  Var. maritima – north & central CA coast  Both:  Coastal areas; sea bluffs and slopes  Sandy soils var. maritima © 2008 Jorg Fleige Grindelia hirsutula var. maritima http://www.coestatepark.com/grindelia_hirsutula.htm © Project SOUND http://www.coestatepark.com/grindelia_hirsutula.htm © Project SOUND http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_JM_treatment.pl?609,1255,1260,1264 10
  11. 11. 1/7/2013 Hairy Gumplant - an herbaceous perennial Flowers are pure gold  Size:  Blooms: spring-summer – usually  1-3 ft tall (v. maritima 1-2 ft) June-Aug in S. Bay  1-3 ft wide  Flowers:  Growth form:  Typical sunflower heads with  Herbaceous perennial; dies well-developed ray flowers back in fall (maritima has more ray flowers)  Many slender stems from  Bright golden yellow woody rootstock  Profuse bloomer – even with  May be upright or more leaning little summer water (maritima)  Pollinator magnets!!  Foliage: © 2008 Jorg Fleige  Seeds:  Blue-green, tinged with red,  Small, but edible purple or yellow  Birds love them!  More refined-looking than other Grindelia species  Vegetative reproduction: not a © 2000 Joseph Dougherty/ecology.org real spreader © Project SOUND © Project SOUND https://www.anniesannuals.com/signs/d%20-%20g/grindelia_hirsutula.htm Grindelias are useful Hairy Gumplant – a natural plants as well for the perennial bed  At back of mixed flowers  Native American kids beds chewed the ‘gum’ – latex  Along walls, fences probably protects young  Fine on slopes flower buds from predation  Easy, adaptable & hardy  Tea from flowers/leaves used for coughs – don’t over-use  Tincture (in alcohol) for skin itches, poison oak  Flowers for green or yellow natural dyeshttp://www.westernwildflower.com/plant%20index.htm http://www.backyardnature.net/sierras/wildflow.htm http://www.laspilitas.com/nature-of-california/plants/grindella-hirsutula http://sfcompact.blogspot.com/2009/06/mmmmm-food.html © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 11
  12. 12. 1/7/2013 Coastal Groundcover Gum Plant California/Big Gum Plant - Grindelia stricta venulosa Grindelia camporum var. bracteosa  A.K.A Grindelia arenicola, G.a. pachyphylla, G.s. procumbens  Coastal bluff plant from the bay area.  Low growing - < 1 ft.; spreads nicely as a ground cover  Mix with Baccharis Pigeon Point and Penstemon Margarita BOP on coastal slopes  Likes some summer water – Zone 2 to 2-3; good near Zone 3 areas © Project SOUND © Project SOUNDhttp://www.laspilitas.com/nature-of-california/plants/grindelia-stricta-venulosa Include Gumplants in your garden Managing Gum Plants is easy because of..  Requires little water  Attractive flowers Mar-Oct while blooming – Zone 1-2  Balsamic aroma to 2  Tolerates any soil – well-  Cut back in fall to shape – drained is best can tolerate heavy  Drought tolerance; but can pruning take some extra water  Some species are self-  Easy to grow incompatible – so plant  Highly attractive for more than one plant for  Bees seed production  Butterflies  Other than that, require  Other insects (beetles; other unusual insects) little care  Birds (seeds) https://www.anniesannuals.com/signs/d%20-%20g/grindelia_hirsutula.htm © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 12
  13. 13. 1/7/2013 Watering in sandy soils is different How fast is the drainage in your sandy soil? – conduct a ‘perc test’ 1. Know your soil’s drainage properties (the perc test)  Soil texture/Drainage 2. Use appropriate mulch (organic or inorganic) to: 1. Decrease water loss Soil type Approximate time 2. Minimize soil heating to drain 3. Water for longer periods & less Hard-pan or days often sodic soils 1. Use droplet type sprinklers, drip, Clay 3-12 hours trickle, soaker hose 2. Aim for 45 min-1 hr per session Loam 20-60 minutes (to 1 inch water)  dig hole 1 ft x 1 ft 3. Encourage deep rooting Sandy Loam 10-30 minutes  fill with water and let drain Sand cant fill the 4. Monitor your soil moisture,  fill hole again, measure hole, drains particularly in hot, windy weather time for water to drain too fast © Project SOUND © Project SOUND Some areas are naturals for Zone 1 Desert Mallow – Sphaeralcea ambigua Hot, dry & difficult to waterThere are a wide range of local, S. coast & desert perennials/shrubs © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 13
  14. 14. 1/7/2013 Desert Mallow is really an attractive sub-shrub Desert Mallow – Sphaeralcea ambigua  Size:  to 3 ft tall (to 5 ft. with water)  Southwestern U.S.  to 3 ft wide including CA, Nevada, Utah, Arizona to  Growth form: Mexico  Sub-shrub – partly woody  Mounded to slightly sprawling  Dry, rocky slopes, form – many thin, wand-like canyon walls & sandy branches wash edges  Short-lived – but will reseed  Creosote bush scrub, pinyon-juniper  Foliage: woodland, both  Gray-green; velvety soft deserts (Mojave &  Leaf shape is typical mallow. Sonoran)  Many people are allergic to the Desert Mallow; often calledhttp://www.swsbm.com/Maps/Sphaeralcea_ambigua.gif http://www.flickr.com/photos/36764294@N00/13295740 "Hierba Muy Mala" in Spanish Foliage is good Desert Tortoise food © Project SOUND © Project SOUND Flowers remind one of Flowers of many colors…. Hollyhocks  Blooms:  Spring is usual bloom season (Mar-May), following rains  May bloom off and on throughout year in garden  Flowers: http://www.fireflyforest.com/flowers/reds/red05.html  Showy mallow blooms along the stems  Color- usually ‘apricot’ (another name is Apricot Mallow), but differs with variety  Nectar & pollen attract butterflies, hummingbirds, any other insects var. rosacea vars ambigua & monticola © Project SOUND http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/7/77/Sphaeralcea_ambigua_11.jpg © Project SOUND http://farm1.static.flickr.com/149/430082786_0b30a88eee.jpg?v=0 14
  15. 15. 1/7/2013 Desert Mallow is easy…  Soils: Desert Mallow is  Texture: sandy or rocky – needs good drainage versatile in the garden  pH: any local, including alkali  Lovely addition to mixed beds –  Light: full sun place appropriate for size  Water:  Excellent for water-wise garden,  Winter: plant in winter; be particularly in sandy/rocky soils; sure it gets adequate winter most drought-tolerant water Sphaeralcea http://www.laspilitas.com/nature-of-california/plants/sphaeralcea-ambigua  Summer: Zone 2-3 for first year; Zone 1-2 to 2  Good for desert-themed gardens thereafter. Blooms more with water.  Good choice for containers  Fertilizer: none; likes poor soils;  Great on dry slopes, hot gardens; use inorganic mulch not for very foggy areas  Other: Cut back to 6” every  Protect roots from gophers year or so – wear protection! (cage) if present http://www.bridgerlandaudubon.org/wildaboututah/090407xeri-garden.htm © Project SOUND © Project SOUND http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Sphaeralcea_ambigua_10.jpg Considerations when choosing Globemallows (Sphaeralceas) Cultivar ‘Louis Hamilton’ & other Mallows  Choose when in bloom;  Beautiful rose ‘Louis Hamilton’ wide variety of flower colored blooms. color, leaf characteristics  Great in dry gardenhttp://www.calisolearning.com/wildflowers2005.htm or on slope.  Hybridization can be an http://www.calflora.net/losangelesarboretum/whatsbloomingmar07E.html issue; deadhead if you  Stops traffic when in don’t want seedlings full bloom.  Use of local species/ varieties when appropriate http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Sphaeralcea-ambigua-20080327.JPG © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 15
  16. 16. 1/7/2013 Perhaps some local native shrubs might be nice… http://www.shadyway.com/Newsletters/Bits%20and%20Briefs%20March%202002.htm Other perennials for sandy/rocky soils:  Penstemons  Asclepias (Milkweeds)  Eriogonum (Buckwheats)  Erysimum (Wallflowers)  And many, many more © Project SOUND © Project SOUND San Clemente Island Bush Mallow - Malacothamnus clementinus Succeeding with San Clemente Mallow  Light: full sun to part-shade  Soils: any  Water: little needed once established; don’t over-water  Nutrients: little needed – pioneer species  The shrub is a vigorous resprouter, sending runners up to 3 meters from a parent shrub  Cut back when starts to look raggedy © Project SOUND © Project SOUND 16
  17. 17. 1/7/2013 Chaparral Mallow – Malacothamnus fasciculatus Chaparral Mallow – Malacothamnus fasciculatus  Coastal ranges and desert mtn. ranges from N. CA to Baja  Common shrub throughout chaparral and coastal sage scrub  Dry slopes and fans to about 2500‘; also on http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_JM_treatment.pl?5042,5073,5079 disturbed ground  AKA ‘Mendocino Mallow’ http://www.coepark.org/wildflowers/purple/malacothamnus-fasciculatus.html © Project SOUND © Project SOUND Chaparral Mallow is a mounding large shrub Chaparral Mallow  Size: in the wild  4-12 ft tall depending on site  Usually 4-6 ft wide; spreading to 12 ft on optimal  Large shrub of the sites foothills  Growth form:  Mounded woody shrub  Locally on Catalina  Quick to moderate growth Isl, Griffith Park,  Long, wand-like branches Santa Monica  Somewhat drought-deciduous Mountains  Foliage:  Blue-green to gray-green; fuzzy hairs  Typical mallow leaves  Roots: spreads via rhizomeshttp://www.calflora.net/bloomingplants/bushmallow.html © Project SOUND http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3080/2716215190_fbc8ca7d8e.jpg?v=0 © Project SOUND http://www.sci.sdsu.edu/plants/sdpls/plants/chap049.html 17