This is not a textbook or a "complete" book of soils. It is simply a practical discussion of good garden soil; call it "Gardener's Loam"-how to get it, how to retain it and, of equal importance, how to make it produce maximum results for you and your plants.
I dcn't believe a truly complete book of soils will ever be written; the subject is too vast and complex. It would be no exaggeration to say that a hundred thick volumes would be needed to fully discuss soils.
In preparing my previous book, "Your Lawn-How to Make It and Keep It," I gathered reams of research reports and up-to-date scientific data and distilled them into everyday terms and usable information. For this book the job was much tougher. There was an ocean of technical information available about soils, but with extra distillation effort the end result is, again, a book of simple, practical, usable information.
You will find here everything you need to know about Gardener's Loam; an ideal, man-made soil of such quality that it cannot be directly compared with native earth or with the loams and clays of the farmer's field. You will also find discussion of nutrients, organic matter, water and air, soil organisms, alkalinity, and acidity, and other related aspects of soil; this will be sufficiently informative for most of you but, for some of you, the book will only whet your appetite for further reading in scientific books. Whatever your interest, this book will give you a new appreciation and respect for the wonders of soil. There are more unsolved mysteries, more unexplored avenues in the study of soil than in any scientific field in existence. Even the human body is simple when compared with the loam outside your kitchen door.