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Rocks and rubble

New Contributor

Rocks and rubble

Brand new to this whole DIY thing and wanting some advice about the best way to deal with stones and small pieces of rubble in the garden bed. Do I need to remove them? Will they impact on plants establishing themselves? If so, what’s the best/easiest way to do so?

Community Manager Jason
Community Manager

Re: Rocks and rubble

Hi @Newbie5,


Welcome to Workshop. We're pleased to have you join us and trust that you'll learn heaps from our clever and creative members. We have an amazing community sharing helpful information, advice and inspiration every day, so feel free to post anytime you need a hand.


I can kick off on this topic before other members might like to contribute. Any work done preparing your garden bed will certainly pay real dividends down the track. It depends on what you want to grow, but for many plants rocks will be detrimental to their growth. They take up space that could be occupied by nutrient-rich soil, and can block root penetration and growing space. 


The easiest way to remove them really depends on their size. Grabbing them by hand might actually be the quickest and easiest method, especially in conjunction with a shovel and a rake. Creating a makeshift sieve for your wheelbarrow or a bucket is also a smart approach - you can use mesh.


What are you planning to grow? I'm sure members will be happy to give you some pointers about how to improve your soil organically.




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New Contributor

Re: Rocks and rubble

Thanks Jason. At the moment that part of the ‘


garden’ looks like this:


Former Workshop member
Not applicable

Re: Rocks and rubble


@Newbie5 It totally depends on what you want to plant. Some things love arid, rocky soil, but most things don't... do all the desired plants have similar requirements? If the area isn't too large, I'd look at raising the area, rather than digging out rocks. What size root balls will the plants have? A large tree is a different story from a small shrub, or groundcover...
If the stones are gravel, and no more than 2cm, I wouldn't worry too much as drainage is a good thing - unless it's solid clay.
Clay plus gravel = 'may as will be concrete' in summer and "may as well be gritty mud" in winter.
More info would help us help you, re current soil condition, and what you'd like to plant.

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