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St George Landscaping, Masonry and Excavation

Using Fill Dirt in Your Residential Excavation Project

Most of the time, dirt is considered a bad thing: in your house, all over your car, on your kids’ faces. But think about it for a minute. Really, dirt is only a bad thing when it’s in the wrong place. When it’s where it belongs and is actually needed, dirt is a great thing indeed – and when you’re talking about landscaping or your residential excavation project, dirt is especially nifty.

When Dirt Comes in Handy

Under many different circumstances, you absolutely must have dirt. Fill dirt is a definite requirement when you’re talking about excavation and other landscaping projects. Fill dirt is essentially soil — or dirt — that sits just below the rich top layer, where you plant your fruits, vegetables, and flowers. You may also hear people call it subsoil.

Fill dirt may include some smaller rocks, sand, pieces of root, etc. It can either be screened to remove most of this stuff, or unscreened. Your choice will depend on what you’re using it for. Fill dirt doesn’t generally offer much in the way of organic matter or nutrients for growing things. However, what it lacks in nutrient density, it makes up for in functionality.

The Purpose of Fill Dirt

Fill dirt is best used as its name implies: to fill. If you have an area of your yard that needs to be built up or filled in, fill dirt is what you should be looking for. Organic material normally found in rich topsoil (but absent in fill dirt) could actually hurt certain projects, because as that matter decays, anything built on top of that area could settle. But if an earthy base is what you’re after, fill dirt fits the bill.

There are many projects that would require some quantity of fill dirt, including:

  • Filling a hole created by the removal of an in-ground trampoline
  • Removal of a swimming pool
  • Leveling off an embankment or slope
  • Creating a raised area for a garden (rich garden soil would be layered on top)
  • Building up a base for a large landscaping project
  • Leveling or grading prior to other work
  • Preparing for paving projects such as patios or pathways
  • Filling in around a home’s foundation to correct or prevent drainage issues
  • Securing areas around retaining walls

Depending on your project, your necessary fill dirt may come from an excavated space in your yard, or it could be brought in from elsewhere. Fill dirt doesn’t get a lot of fanfare, but it definitely serves an important purpose in helping the visible parts of your property look and perform their best.

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