Articles, Blog

Minerals to Improve Soil |William Glenn |Central Texas Gardener

December 5, 2019

Hello and welcome to Backyard Basics, I’m William Glenn. We’ve learned a lot
about the benefits of compost– water holding capacity, the nutrients
they impart but the sort of yang to the yin of composts
are going to be the dust and sand that help us with our soil
texture as well as target certain deficiencies that might be occurring. We always encourage you to get a soil
test so you know what you’re looking for and what you’re
looking to correct and don’t add more to something that might be already at high
levels. So this is by no means a complete
list of amendments but this is a good representation that I thought we could go
over today. So we’ll go ahead and get started
with greensand here on Texas greensand also known as glauconite and it imparts a lot of iron and
potassium in particular but it also has a whole spectrum of trace minerals and phosphorus in
it’s so it’s real good addition to any fertilization regime. Oftentimes with
nitrogen we get greening but sometimes if you add nitrogen you don’t get
greening– iron will actually be there element
that’s responsible for the other kind of greening you could say. Next
moving over to magnesium sulfate, aka epsom salts, this is an inexpensive way
to target what may be magnesium or sulfur deficiencies, oddly enough, as the
name might suggest But like I said a lot of times people
will target iron, they target nitrogen and
nitrogen deficiency looks pretty similar to a sulfur
deficiency and magnesium deficiency can actually look
like an iron deficiency so if you’ve tried some of these other things and
they’re not working try to make about 2 tablespoons per
gallon in solution of water and drenched the root zone with a magnesium sulfate and you might be surprised it’s
particularly effective with bamboos, grasses, palms– all of which are grasses. So now moving over to the lava sands.
These are really interesting to me because I just finished reading this
book by Dr. Phil Callahan. It is a very enlightening book that
describes a phenomenon called paramagnetism. Now paramagnetism is not universally
agreed upon, I should say that it still has some anecdotal stuff, but through time
we’re actually learning that there is a cosmic relationship between soil and plants thats verifiable in a lab.
They’ve isolated vials a paramagnetic substances basalt, in
particular, and grown it adjacent the plants that grew, sometimes in certain cases, two inches
taller than the ones that were not adjacent to the basalt in the exact same
conditions. So anyway paramagnetism, awesome
phenomenon, I encourage you to read that book. Basalt is the highest reading
paramagnetic substance that we can get around here. But in addition to that it is
iron-rich– we describe iron benefits a little while ago– and
improves the porosity, the texture, loft– you hear these words of soil
but basically we’re talking about the breathability. Lava sand, which is actually from my
hometown of Las Cruces, New Mexico. This is scoria, it is vesicular
substance which means it’s filled with cavities like pumice is. It is a very helpful for the
breathability of the soil and to allow for nutrient and cationic
exchange. One of the best things if you have a
clay malatal soil that typify, say the San Antonio/Austin area,
lot of other areas too. Finally over here we’ve got what is
referred to as granite sand and sometimes is referred to as angular sand. And the
reason to gets that angler sand name is because it has a lot of grooves and
angles that make it gritty, that help it open up soil and help it drain
the soil a little bit more effectively and that’s critical around here, a lot of
times are soil does not drain freely so when we add these sorts of things we
can improve that drainage. All three of these, these igneous type
things- basalt, lava sand, and the granite sand we’d all recommended about 40 pounds per
thousand square feet. So I hope that helps. Consult with
your local nursery if you have any more questions about these things. And I’ll see you next time. For Backyard Basics, I’m William Glenn. See you next time.


  • Reply jHALSTON jD October 26, 2014 at 6:58 pm

  • Reply jHALSTON jD October 26, 2014 at 6:58 pm

    get some of their rock dusts there amazing!!! try st george black, humate, ruby mountain

  • Reply Wes D November 11, 2014 at 2:58 am

    Hi hello~ I recently bought a ARIOCARPUS FISSURATUS on the internet and I will receive it by the next week. Can you please give me some tips on how to make a mix soil for this kind of plant? Thank you so much! 🙂

  • Reply whisperingsage October 20, 2016 at 5:11 am

    Dolomite, Calcium/ magnesium and limestone 60 minerals I had NO Tomato hornworms this year!!!!!!!

  • Reply Jarred Mendiveles May 14, 2017 at 4:16 am

    shout out to youre hometown

  • Reply New Negritude October 25, 2017 at 3:47 pm

    Gorgeous flowers on your shirt!!

  • Reply J223e J January 6, 2018 at 2:02 pm

    What is your contact information I have a rather large supply of basaltic volcanic rock dust with extremely paramagnetic number… I can send free samples if you are willing to give it a try

  • Reply BetterYouBetterWorld V March 15, 2018 at 12:44 pm

    u make me want to collect minerals lol

  • Reply Gustavo Berti December 9, 2018 at 9:51 am

    Hi Body!
    Have You ever make or heard about Fulvic & humic acid? I mean such as come From turf decompositon as Well?
    We are from Brazil and Also we provide and sell wordly.
    Nice video! Very congrats

  • Reply Daniel January 9, 2019 at 9:38 am

    FYI the sea has all the trace minerals, seaweed free

  • Reply Chris February 16, 2019 at 2:52 pm

    40 pounds per thousand square feet soil structure amending material, will do nothing. It's like less than a teaspoon per pound of soil. isnt going to affect structure.
    basalt is real, i.e. contains minerals. paramagnetism is snake oil.

  • Leave a Reply