Can I Use Potting Soil To Fill A Hole In My Yard? (Find Out Now!)

Upgraded Home Team
by Upgraded Home Team

It is sometimes nothing more than an eyesore, and sometimes it is much more. Regardless of how it is perceived though, that hole in the yard or glaringly uneven area in the lawn is a problem. The simple answer, of course, is to fill the hole or build up the low spot. That is where the real question also arises. Namely, those questions typically sound like what can or should be used to fill that hole in the yard? Can sand, topsoil, fill dirt, or potting soil be used?

Homeowners can choose to use potting soil to fill a hole in the yard, but it is advised that potting soil isn’t used alone. In most cases, potting soil will be combined with sand and other fillers. Additionally, potting soil isn’t technically soil, and it wasn’t designed for use in yards or the ground.

Potting soil, topsoil, sand, fill dirt, compost, and clay has specific uses. The key to having a beautiful yard and effectively filling those holes and building up low areas is knowing when to use which. And in some cases, it requires knowing what combination of these fillers to use.

Each of these fillers and soil types can be used to serve and meet specific goals. That also includes when and how to use topsoil, especially if it is being utilized as a type of filler for that eyesore in the yard. Here is a look at the most commonly used fillers to fix those holes and our yards.

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Using Potting Soil as a Filler

While potting soil makes for a poor filler by itself, it is commonly used as a hole-fill mixture. In most cases, sand is generally also used, along with another filler material such as compost. That composite filler is then used to fill holes, and it is also suggested to leave three to four inches for sod plugs. This room allows ample room for the grass to root, grow, and settle.

Potting soil as a filler is also used because of its strong drainage traits. Although potting soil is technically not a soil, it was designed for use in pots and planters those also are the same reasons for its drainage capabilities. That also makes it ideal for yards with drainage issues or in areas that receive considerable rainfall totals.

Using Sand as a Filler

The one similarity sand has with potting soil is that neither makes for a good hole filler or leveling material alone. Fortunately, that is pretty common knowledge when it comes to using sand. Sand is also a cost-effective way of making those filler materials go farther, or deeper, as the case may be.

Sand is also fairly solid once it settles, making it a good option to be used as a combination product for leveling yards or fixing low areas. Sand isn’t conducive to grass growth, which is also another reason for leaving that extra room at the top of those holes for sodding.

Using Topsoil as a Filler

Arguably, one of the most popular filler combination materials, topsoil offers a readily available, affordable, and often practical option. The concern with topsoil is its ability or inability to sustain healthy grass growth alone. Topsoil can also be difficult to gauge when it comes to settling, which is why sand is such a common combination filler material.

That potential lack of nutrients from using topsoil as a filler is also another reason homeowners may choose to add potting soil to the hole-fill mixture. As a rule of thumb, most topsoil also offers average soil drainage. The other upside is that topsoil can be fairly available and is generally easy to get.

Using Fill Dirt as a Filler

Its namesake alone should tell everyone that this is easily the most popular and widely used soil or material used as a filler. Fill dirt is most often associated with large construction products or being used in quantity. Although that is true, it doesn’t mean that fill dirt doesn’t make an excellent option to help with the hole in the yard.

The truth is fill dirt is probably one of the best options for holes of any size, and in particular for yard leveling jobs. The biggest concern when using fill dirt is the potential for poor drainage. This is also why in many situations, fill dirt is also used as a combination material.

Using Compost as a Filler

Compost, which in some parts of the world is considered interchangeable with manure, is technically a combination of different ingredients such as food waste and decomposing vegetation. While compost is a fertilizer and not a filler, it is commonly added to filler combinations. This is particularly true in more barren regions or areas with poor growth.

Using Clay as a Filler

In the majority of situations, clay will be employed as a foundation enforcing product. It can be used, however, to help when filling holes that are extremely prone to soft or sinking ground as well. The biggest concern with using clay, in addition to it not promoting grass growth, is its weak drainage traits.

It is also the lack of drainage that makes clay a good product when attempting to direct or guide drainage. For example, clay can be a good choice for homeowners wanting to level a yard and promote water run off too.

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Using the Right Filler

Any combination of these materials, from the true soil products, to the manufactured potting soil, and those non-soil products, are all valuable tools. And when used properly together, they offer a beautiful and most importantly, hole-free lawn. If you have questions about taking care of that eyesore in the yard, then many landscaping companies can be a great resource as well.

The right filler combinations to take care of those holes or level the yard will determine the outcome and appearance of every yard. So, before just throwing some rocks, sticks, and dirt in that hole, find the right combination of filler material for your yard. Then you won’t have to worry about that hole and the brown spot where the grass was supposed to grow.

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Upgraded Home Team
Upgraded Home Team

We are a team of passionate homeowners, home improvement pros, and DIY enthusiasts who enjoy sharing home improvement, housekeeping, decorating, and more with other homeowners! Whether you're looking for a step-by-step guide on fixing an appliance or the cost of installing a fence, we've here to help.

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