I often find myself blaming the soil when a plant in our veggie plot doesn't do well "oh we don't have very good soil, there are big chunks of clay, the builders dumped cruddy soil there, blah blah blah."
I know - boo hoo. It's too late to dig it all up and start again so I just do my best adding compost (all that dirty straw from the chicken coop goes into the compost heap), mulching, watering with worm juice and seasol, and chucking out the big clay clods when I come across them.
But I read something encouraging this week.
I've had Organic: Don Burke's Guide to Growing Organic Food for a little while, but like all good books - its seems to reveal something new with revisit.
In his chapter on soil preparation - he notes that you can't buy great soil in Australia - that soils sold by nurseries are alluvial silts (which according to old Donny fail to develop proper soil structure and won't allow roots enough oxygen to breathe).
My fave bit was:
"Your own soil is good. It is the best soil that you can ever get. Work that soil up with compost, manures, gypsum etc and it will be perfect. So many people say that their soil is no good because it is clay. Clay soils are amongst the best soils in the world! Never let any of your soil leave your property. It is pure gold."
Good old Don. So - no more blaming the soil. Which I guess leaves the rest up to me...