Soil has a layer of sandy-like substance


I turned over a small part of my garden to prep for transplanting a plant. I found a layer of sandy-like substance. The soil is full of our neighbour’s cedar hedge roots and i have grown lemon balm in the space for years. There is no obvious insect infestation. It just seems odd and i wonder if the soil has a fungus. Thank you!



Thank you for contacting Toronto Master Gardeners regarding the unusual layer in your garden soil.

We have searched for soil fungus and found the following: Soil fungi are microscopic cells that typically grow as long threads or strands called hyphae. Most fungi found in the soil are beneficial and help promote water uptake, nutrient movement and prevention of disease. They’re also important to decomposition, converting organic material into forms that plants can use.

Their thread-like form would rule out a similarity to your soil anomaly.

The article What Makes Soils Different From One Another? explains how organisms and humus affect the size and shape of the clumps and particles that make up the soil’s structure.

The layer that you see is possibly an accumulation of decomposed organic and/or mineral matter. There is a great deal of credible information on the web if you are interested in pursuing further the fascinating subject of soils.

We appreciated the opportunity of looking into your intriguing discovery.