How do you build a healthy garden soil

Good garden soil for a beautiful lawn: the best tips plus costs

Cost overview:

Turf soil, quartz sand and other "basic foodstuffs" for your lawn can be found at the specialist dealer or hardware store of your choice. Here is a rough overview.

  • Compost: approx. 19 € / m³
  • Potting soil: approx. 37 € / m³
  • Humus (25mm): approx. 19 € / m³
  • Roof garden soil: approx. 37 € / m³
  • Potting soil: approx. 61 € / m³
  • Garden soil: approx. 37 € / m³

Good garden soil has a crumbly structure, stores enough water and is well ventilated at the same time. It provides plants with sufficient nutrients and is easy to work with. For example, in order to be able to sow a lawn on such healthy and fertile garden soil, there must be an optimal mixture of humus, loam, clay and sand. This is often not the case in your own garden and you have to help a little so that the soil has the desired properties.

Rules for a healthy garden soil

First of all, familiarize yourself with the nature of your garden soil. This is the only way to work or plant them properly. The hand sample helps to determine the type of soil. Before you plant or sow, you should prepare the garden soil well. How you can enrich the different types of soil:

  • Sandy soils store little water and are well aerated. Improve it by incorporating ripe compost annually in the spring.
  • Loam and clay soils store water very well, which promotes waterlogging and a lack of air. Here, too, you should work in ripe compost and / or quartz sand so that the soil structure loosens up. If possible, mix in sand as well.

How is garden soil loosened?

With the help of green manure, you can loosen up garden soil. The "fertilization" or the increased humus content is only a side effect here. It is primarily about planting plants that loosen up the soil. Green manure crops, such as B. Yellow lupine, red clover, marigold, winter rape or sunflower have a deep root system that can loosen even heavy, compacted soils. Other positive side effects: Some of the plants are natural pest fighters (e.g. drive away marigolds roundworms), while mowed and abandoned plants act like a protective layer of mulch and attract the beneficial earthworms.


The soil pH should be checked every three years. If it is below 5.5, the lawn should be limed in spring. In addition, the soil can be made easier to absorb nutrients by lightly working in clay powder (e.g. betonite).

The perfect surface for a beautiful lawn

When it comes to the soil, lawns are not particularly demanding, nonetheless some basic requirements should be met in order to achieve good results with lawn seeds as well as rolled or finished lawns. You should pay attention to a good topsoil, especially with new building plots. The ideal soil type for a lawn is sandy loam soil or humus, loamy sand soil. Accordingly, organic matter (bark humus, humus-rich garden soil, compost) must be incorporated in soil that is too sandy, and washed, lime-free sand (e.g. quartz sand) in loamy or very humus-rich soils. Weeds and coarse parts must be removed from the soil supplied.

How to prepare the soil for the lawn?

If the garden soil - as is so often the case - is heavily compacted due to heavy loads, mechanical subsoil loosening, for example milling, is necessary. Before working with the heavy tiller, a terrain profile should be created, paying special attention to the runoff of rainwater. We recommend a slight slope of approx. 2 percent towards the adjoining flowerbeds or a slope of the soil from adjoining walls. An incline of more than 15 percent should be avoided, especially in order not to make later mowing unnecessarily difficult.


For dry lawn or rock garden planting, the topsoil is heavily emaciated with sand, since an overly nutrient-rich topsoil is counterproductive here.

To prepare the lawn, existing weeds must be removed, whereby large plants with a compact root system (nettle, dandelion, sorrel) can be gouged out with a spade. Smaller weeds can only be controlled with a herbicide, but this can take up to four weeks. Before the approx. 15 cm thick turf layer is applied, the subsoil is loosened (at least 20 cm deep) and removed with a wooden rake or krail and roughly leveled. The turf layer is spread with a wheelbarrow, the wheel pressure of which must be distributed with the help of laid-out boards so that the soil does not compact. In order to avoid irregular settlement of the topsoil, care should be taken to ensure that the soil is distributed as evenly as possible. An upright wooden rake enables the leveling of hills and valleys. Then plan with the tines parallel to the ground.

How does the lawn become even?

In order to obtain a completely even lawn area, height markings must be made before the soil is distributed. To do this, small pegs are driven into the ground, on which the heights are marked with a water level, starting from a previously established zero point, taking into account the slope of the terrain. This is particularly easy with a laser spirit level, which is available from around 20 euros. The stakes are removed again before the lawn is sown.

The connections between the sward and paths, garden boundaries, manhole covers, retractable irrigation systems, etc. must be designed in such a way that the lawnmower's blades do not hit them later. To do this, the subsurface - with a later cutting height of at least 3-5 cm - must project over the obstacles by 2-3 cm.

Think about obstacles!

The connections between the sward and paths, garden boundaries, manhole covers, retractable irrigation systems, etc. must be designed in such a way that the blades of the lawnmower do not hit them later. To do this, the ground - with a later cutting height of at least three to five centimeters - must project over the obstacles by two to three centimeters.