Thursday, June 24, 2010

Grape Roots

These grape roots reveal a lot about root growth in naturally shallow soils. The roots here are all in the top two feet of the soil.

Roots find conditions the most cushy and convenient near the surface of the soil and will do almost anything to live there. Since they can’t find their way through hardpan or less fertile soil, it can be quite deep and there’s no real reason to try to break it up. If the drainage is poor and water is likely to flood the roots, and if there is some decent soil beneath the hardpan, then breaking through will probably be required. With this grape vineyard the soil is shallow and clay is like a hardpan just a few feet below the surface. Notice how large the diameter of the surface roots are. The roots haven’t been able to piece the clay to get to the lens (pocket) of gravel and sand much deeper in the soil.

Based on my book, Roots Demystified, Change Your Gardening Habits to Help Roots Thrive.


Let me know what you think. Visit my web site to learn about my new book on drip irrigation and other gardening books. Thanks, Robert

No comments: