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Lime is a very familiar term for most of the gardeners. It’s super useful in the case of acidic soil. You use it when your lawn is slowly losing its charm and growing capabilities.
Now that event can be a result of acidic or alkali soil. In scientific terms, your soil has very low or very high soil pH. Soil pH is a method of measuring the characteristic of soil. Low pH values (< 5.5) indicate acidic soils and high pH values (> 8.0) indicate alkali soils.
Now that defected soil is not ideal for growing anything. So, you need to get yourself some lime to beat the soil into a normal balanced shape. Now to do it, you need sound knowledge about lime. What it actually is, how it works etc. etc.
Now Fall and spring are generally considered the best times to use lime in your lawn. Fall has a plus point, like rain, snow, and cycles of freezing and thawing help lime to break down and begin to work.
Well enough with that. Let’s begin the work to make yourself familiar with lime and it’s using process.
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Let’s Start with The Basic
What is LIME? Lime is nothing but a soil modification made from ground limestone rock. It has chemical compounds like calcium carbonate and magnesium carbonate in it. After adding to the soil, these mix works to increase the soil’s pH, that is, decreases the amount of acid in the soil. Calcium and magnesium are considered essential nutrients for healthy plant growth. Though they are important for the plants they’re not a substitute for fertilizer. Lime can improve the nutrient count of the plants.
Two types of lime can be used for lawn. One is Dolomitic limestone which does the job of adding magnesium to lawn’s soil and the other is Calcitic limestone which is mostly made up of calcium carbonate. Both of them are equally effective in decreasing the acidic level of the soil.
Ups and Downs of Soil pH
It’s nothing miraculous, this pH changing episode can happen naturally over time. Excess amounts of watering or rainfall, acidic water or use of fertilizers that contain nitrogen can eventually cause acidic soil.
PH is a method of measuring the acidity of the soil. Acidic soil or low pH destroys the natural nourishment of the soil. It blocks the availability of nutrients to the grass or plants.
Soil pH can change for so many reasons,
- Like it can happen for the lime or other fertilizers you add in soil.
- If you live in some heavy rainfall area, then the rainwater can wash away calcium from the soil. The loss of calcium results in a decrease in soil pH and makes it acidic.
- Again, if you have very little rainfall, then it can increase the amount of pH and make the soil too alkaline.
- Over time soil pH can become lower without maintenance.
When to Consider Applying Lime?
You should consider applying lime when your lawn soil shows the sign of low pH that is, a high amount of acid in it. It can minimize the availability of nutrients in the soil. This situation will block the normal growth of your plants. That’s why you should apply lime to bring back the perfectly balanced soil which is best for your plants.
Routine Checkup for Lime Treatment
Now to be sure if your lawn needs some lime treatment or not, you have to check whether or not your lawn got the correct pH level. If the pH level is too low or too high, then you’ll see some symptoms of it in your lawn. Look out for them and be sure.
- Your lawn can turn yellow instead of green.
- There’ll be too much weed in your lawn than normal time. Weeds grow in low pH acidic soil.
- The fertilizer you apply seems to be ineffective.
- Your lawn will have an excess amount of moss as it loves acidic soil to grow on. It is an indication for you that the pH level needs to be raised.
- With a pH kit, you can also measure it. If the pH level is between 6.2-7.0 then your lawn is fine. Many plants grow best within that range.
- Some soil types are primarily acidic. So, gather knowledge about the type of soil you have in your lawn because it’ll make it easier to decide if it needs lime treatment.
How Much to Apply?
Based on the soil type and current pH, soil test results will indicate the amount of lime you need to use. Following those recommendations closely is the best idea, as suitable amounts can vary for soil types. For example, sandy soil takes much less lime than clay soil to achieve the same results.
There you go. Now you know a lot about Lime. Now you can keep your Lawn beautiful all the time.
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