Loam

Definition - What does Loam mean?

In gardening, loam refers to a soil mixture that consists of organic matter, sand, and clay. There are various types and textures of loam soils that are common among gardeners, such as sandy, clay, and silty.

Loam soil provides the ideal growing environment for many plants because it contains more humus, nutrients, and moisture than regular soil. It also provides good aeration due to its porous texture that optimizes water absorption.

MaximumYield explains Loam

The mineral content in loam soil is usually around 40 per cent sand, 40 per cent silt, and 20 per cent clay by weight. However, these ratios can vary slightly, leading to three different types of loam soil.

Clay soil is often dry and packed hard but becomes slippery when damp. It can also be molded into a ball when humid.

Sandy soil, on the other hand, boasts a looser texture and doesn’t hold its shape. While sandy soil does not hold water, it allows for excellent oxygenation of the root zone.

Silt soil is a mixture of dry clay and sandy soil, creating a happy medium for many plants. In some cases, humus is added to the loam mixture if the plot of growing soil naturally lacks bacteria. Humus for loam is made up of animal matter and decomposed vegetables.

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