Clay and gravel and rocks, oh my!
I am embarking on a major renovation of a garden that has been neglected for many years. And I'm faced with a particular challenge in one of the planting beds that is about 3x15 feet in size.
First I had to dig out the 6 dying Arborvitae - after I did that, it looked like I'd have nice soft soil to plant perennials in. Silly rabbit!
Turns out, there was only an inch of good soil that sat on top of a four inch layer of landscaping rock which sat on top of a sheet of visqueen. And it's likely been like that for multiple decades.
So I picked out more than 150 lbs of rock (basically everything larger than a nickel) and pulled up the plastic in shreds and then what did I find? Slick grey and yellow clay full of pea gravel. Ugh.
No wonder the trees were dying.
So now what? I have a truck load of good compost that I was planning to work in with a tiller before I discovered the clay/gravel. Should I proceed with mixing it in? Or should I dig out as much of the clay as I can, and replace it with a compost/topsoil mixture?
Since there aren't any plants in the bed, I figure now is the time to "do it right" but I'm not sure what that is.