Loam is the top layer of soil on the earth’s crust. This material is highly variable, depending on where you buy it and what the original source is. Without a large emphasis on both buying it from places that have high organic content and the right mix of sand, silt and clay, the product you receive may not produce the results you want without fertilizer and a lot of supplements. The second step in producing a quality screened loam is in the screening. The soil has to be dry enough to screen without ruining the tilth of the soil and handled so that it stays fluffed up.
BostonLoam.com has been involved in the loam and landscaping business for many years in a number of capacities. Knowing the variables and how they interact is not rocket science, but does take a guy that is devoted to dirt and a quality product. Many companies make up for some of the components naturally missing in the native dirt they start with as the source of loam by mixing in other things. There are a lot of different soil types in the state of Massachusetts, so what is selected to start with has a large impact on the end result of the screened loam produced. An example would be a company that mixes in leaf compost or recycled organic material to make up for what is not in the native soil. This can make a good product, if done well. If the compost is not well-decayed, then this material will be taking up nutrients that would have been available to the plants for the decay process. So, you should be aware of the trade-offs that may be present.
Check the Loam Stockpile
BostonLoam has stockpiles in Hyde Park, Massachusetts and our loam is readily available for inspection. If you cannot see the product you may be buying, then this may be a point of concern.
The stockpile of material shows what to expect when it is delivered to you. Things you can see are: color, organic content, size and amount of rock in the soil, texture, and any foreign material.