The Types, Grades & Uses of Topsoil

Are you wondering, “What is topsoil?”. It is the top layer of soil essential for vegetation and is often stripped before building structural loads. If you have been around construction sites, you might have noticed big construction trucks excavating soil before building any structure. But why remove it? What is the benefit of topsoil? What is topsoil used for? We will address all of these questions in this blog.

What Is Topsoil?

When decaying organic matter and weathering rocks combine, they form soil rich in nutrients and vital for vegetation. This soil is topsoil. As we discussed before, it is the top layer of soil. It forms naturally, and one inch can take a hundred years to develop. In addition, it has a high concentration of organic matter, allowing plants to grow healthily. There are many different soils, but based on their unique properties, we can divide them into six structure types:

  1. Sand
  2. Silt
  3. Loam
  4. Clay
  5. Chalk
  6. Peat

What is Screened Topsoil?

We have named the types of topsoil, but if you wonder, “What is screened topsoil? It isn’t on the list!” We have the answer to your query. There are many types, but some are screened while others are not. Screened topsoil is free of debris and big lumps, as it has been screened to remove any chunks.
We can further categorize it into three grades:

  • Economy Grade: is cost-effective and used for large projects. It is valuable where volume matters more than a high grade of soil. Although it is still high in nutrients, it has not gone through the screening process. Therefore, it is ‘unscreened’ topsoil, meaning that large rocks, big lumps, and similar materials are still present in the soil.
  • General-Purpose Grade: is soil that is useful for general landscaping purposes. Moreover, it is available in different screen size grades. This grade helps lay beds as well as a base for sowing a lawn.
  • Premium Grade: is ideal for building flower beds and garden areas. It is the most expensive option, as it is least likely to have weed seeds. In addition, it has a good structure that supports plant growth and comes in handy for building beds.

What is Topsoil Good for?

We have discussed topsoil and its types, but what is topsoil useful for? We will give you a few ways it can be helpful:

  • Topsoil is rich in nutrients that are essential for healthy plant growth. Additionally, it can aid long-term plant growth, retaining moisture and water.
  • It can help reduce erosion.
  • It is cost-effective and saves you time. Your plants will find all they need in topsoil, as it retains water longer than synthetic soil. Furthermore, it helps in balancing drainage too.
  • It helps plants sustain life since this layer of soil can retain its nutrients.
  • It reduces the need for pesticides and chemicals drastically.

What is your takeaway about topsoil? It is high in nutrients and is helpful in many ways. But it is important to remove it from a building site for construction purposes, such as laying the infrastructure. If you need quality fill dirt, like topsoil or other construction-related help, WM Trucking can assist you at 936-372-1399.