How to Make a Contained Garden?

Home gardening advice | 5 Comments

Example of a Dirt-Filled Swimming Pool

Q: We have a swimming pool, that for reasons unbeknownst to me, is filled with dirt. There was thought of bricking it over, but I am thinking of turning it into a garden. If I were to do this, since I don’t know the origin of the dirt, should I treat the soil before planting? This is a group home, on limited funding.  I would not be able to extend great expense in beginning this project. However maybe some of you could offer some shade tree advice towards it getting a good start. I am good with plants. I don’t forsee any major issues,  but I don’t want to sow a bunch of plants into dirt that won’t support their growth. Any suggestions or lending of experience is appreciated.

A: There are two things for you to think about: 1.) Is there anything growing in it now, such as weeds. If so then the soil should be good for something. If not then I would be suspicious. 2.) You can get the soil tested. If your state has a state university with an extension service they may do the test for free, or at a reduced price. (Explain your situation i.e. group home). The other way to test is to go to your local nursery, home improvement, hardware, or farm supply store and get a soil testing kit. There are many things to test for. PH is probably most important. It will tell you how acid or alkailine your soil is. Then get advice from a gardening expert in your region to get the best way to amend the soil.

Something else to consider – pools are made to hold water.  You may need to find a way to break holes in it in places in order for the plants or trees placed in it not to become water-logged.

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