How to Provide Sharp Drainage for Your Plants

If your landscape require sharp drainage, follow these tips for successful gardening all year round.
Anemone blanda ~Blue Shades~ (05) Bloomleaf

Anemone blanda ~Blue Shades~ (05) Bloomleaf

Anemones are one type of plant that prefers sharp drainage, a planting method that ensures good drainage around the crown of the plant.

Anemones are one type of plant that prefers sharp drainage, a planting method that ensures good drainage around the crown of the plant.

Sharp drainage refers to a method of planting that requires both constant moisture and excellent drainage, especially during the winter months. "Thankfully, not many landscape plants require sharp drainage," says master gardener Paul James. "Perhaps the most popular of those that prefer this type of drainage are the anemones. But if your soil has a high percentage of clay or if you live in an area that receives a large amount of rain, then just about any plant will benefit to some extent from sharp drainage."

To provide sharp drainage for your plants, dig a hole twice the width of the nursery pot and three inches deeper. Mix some of the native soil with an equal amount of granite chips, and use that to fill the bottom three inches of the planting hole.

Granite chips are sometimes called turkey grit because they're occasionally fed to turkeys as a kind of digestive aid. As a result, you may have more luck finding the granite chips at a feed store rather than at a nursery. Whatever you do, however, be sure to avoid limestone chips. Limestone will ultimately pack down like cement into the soil, and it will also affect the alkalinity of the soil. Granite chips on the other hand, are pH neutral.

Place the plant in the hole, and fill in the hole with soil. Leave about a half-inch of the plant crown above the soil level, and apply a light layer of granite chips around the base of the plant, extending the chips out to the edges of the planting hole.

Sharp drainage offers far more drainage than a conventional planting hole, especially by providing the plant with drainage where it needs it the most - at the bottom of the planting hole and around the crown of the plant.

Keep Reading

1,000+ Photos

Browse beautiful photos of our favorite outdoor spaces: decks, patios, porches and more.

On TV

Living Alaska

7:30am | 6:30c

Flip or Flop

12pm | 11c

Flip or Flop

12:30pm | 11:30c

Flip or Flop

1pm | 12c

Flip or Flop

1:30pm | 12:30c

Flip or Flop

2:30pm | 1:30c

Flip or Flop

3:30pm | 2:30c

Flip or Flop

4:30pm | 3:30c

Flip or Flop

5:30pm | 4:30c

Flip or Flop

6:30pm | 5:30c

Flip or Flop

7:30pm | 6:30c
On Tonight
On Tonight

Flip or Flop

8pm | 7c

Flip or Flop

8:30pm | 7:30c

Flip or Flop

9:30pm | 8:30c

House Hunters

10pm | 9c

House Hunters

11pm | 10c

Flip or Flop

12am | 11c

Flip or Flop

12:30am | 11:30c

House Hunters

1am | 12c

Flip or Flop

3:30am | 2:30c

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.