The Different Types of Soil

Gardeners may come across different types of soil in various parts of the UK, which can have a huge implications on what they are able to grow there. There are things you can do to improve your soil, such as working in organic matter, so you should take these steps over a period of time if you find that you don’t have very high quality soil in your local area.


These are the main types of soil you will find, and how to identify them:


  • Clay soil. It will feel very sticky, and hard when dried. You can plant flowers like Bergamot and flowering quince.
  • Sandy. This will have fast drainage and be gritty in texture. Tulips and hibiscus might do well in sandy soil.
  • Peat soil. It will be dark in colour, and will retain moisture. Try growing heather and witch hazel.
  • Silty soil. Smooth and well draining, you can grow Mahonia and ornamental vine.
  • Loamy soil. With good structure and drainage, this is the ideal soil. Try growing wisteria or delphinium.
  • Chalky soil. With an alkaline pH and stony texture, chalky soil might support lilac and Madonna lily.

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