What is Silt Soil?
Silt soil is finer than sand, but still feels gritty. Silt is commonly found in floodplains and is the soil component that makes mud. Soils with a lot of silt make excellent farm land, but erode easily. This is the soil blown away in dust storms and carried down stream in floods.
Silt soil is similar to loam soil but contains smaller ratios of both sand and clay particles. Silt soil feels smooth and silky. Silt soil retains water well but may drain slowly depending on the exact clay-silt-sand ratio. Because of this, gardeners usually amend silt soil, mixing in mulches, fertilizers, drainage assistance particles, such as sand, or other soil additives to solve drainage issues and provide the proper growth medium for most plants.
Amending Silt Soil
When amending silt soil, till to a depth of at least 1 foot.
Then add a layer any soil amendments over the tilled soil. Sulfur amendments can lower pH levels, while lime raises them. Gypsum improves calcium and Epsom salt raises magnesium levels. Add organic materials, such as mushroom compost, composted cow manure or your own homemade compost. While silt-based soils work fine for most gardeners, small amounts of sand can be added to it to help with water absorption.
Till the amendments into the soil. If the procedure is conducted in the fall, the improvements should be apparent by the following spring.