Different soils have different textures and properties that should be considered when growing different things in them.
In this short guide, we outline what might grow well in chalky soil.
Characteristics Of, & Profile Of Chalky Soil
- Can be a light or heavy soil
- Is usually an alkaline soil (with a pH level above 7) because of the lime or calcium carbonate found in it or underneath it
- Doesn’t suit the growth of plants that need acidic (below pH 7) or neutral (pH 7) conditions to grow.
- Minerals can leach out of chalky soil quickly, and it drains quite quickly because of the large soil particle size or the rocks sometimes found in it
Adding fertilizer, balancing the pH and adding organic matter can make chalky soil more fertile, more workable and improve moisture retention.
Working With, Improving & Amending Chalky Soil
Read more at:
A Note On Soil Types, & What Ultimately Impacts How Things Grow
Before we look at what grows well in chalky soil, it’s important to note that all soils are slightly different in composition depending on the location (you might get one type of chalky soil in one location, but in another you might get a different type of chalky soil with different characteristics), there are different external factors acting upon each soil, and ultimately, there are many physical, chemical and biological factors that determine how well something grows in a particular spot or under particular conditions.
This is just a guide on chalky soils in general, without going into extreme depth about all these other factors (factors like soil fertility, soil health, soil quality, fertilizer added, top soil added, pesticides added, tilling practices and so on).
It would do you well in the long term to get information on the soil in your location (what it is and what is the best way to manage it), the climate in your location (temperature, rainfall etc.) and the growing seasons (for example – the US has different planting zones), the plants or things you want to grow and the conditions they need – and come up with a specific plan for your situation.
What Grows Well In Alkaline Soils?
We’ve already put together a guide on what can grow in alkaline soils.
Trees, Flowers, Plants & Shrubs That Grow In Chalky Soil
- Madonna lilies
- Mock Oranges
Read more about plants suitable for chalky soils at:
Vegetables & Crops That Grow In Chalky Soil
- Sweet corn