Gardeners living on soil with a high clay or sand content are usually forced to bring in proper planting soil from an outside source. Most gardeners in this situation opt for soil that has organic matter mixed in to increase the nutrient content, and that has a pH between 6.0 and 7.0. As of spring 2011, prices for gardening soil range from $15 to $22 per cubic yard. Taking this basic knowledge into consideration, the next logical question is "Where do I buy the soil I need?"
One option for the gardener in need is to visit the nearest garden supply or landscaping supply store where a wide assortment of soil types for specific needs are available. If you're unsure as to the specific type of soil you'll need, opt for a professional garden or landscaping supply store rather than a large, all-purpose chain hardware store so that you can get more knowledgeable employee advice on your purchase. If you already know the exact type of soil you need, franchised hardware outlets are sufficient.
Another option for gardeners in need of soil is a local nursery. While many nurseries may not have soil for sale to the general public, they can at least provide you with information as to who their supplier is. If you're planning a large garden, a nursery-recommended supplier may offer you a bulk rate for soil and shipping options that include conveniently dumping large amounts of soil where your garden area will be.
Wherever you choose to get your soil, don't underestimate the value of getting purchasing advice from people in your community who are already gardening. These people can give you valuable growing advice, as well as recommendations for where to purchase the best soil mixes and how to best utilize them in an area which may not be naturally suited for most types of flower or vegetable cultivation.