Using Dolomite Lime to Reduce Soil Acidity for a Healthy Lawn
Soil acidity or alkalinity (soil pH) is important because it influences how easily plants can take up nutrients from the soil. If your soil is too acid, your lawn won’t get the benefit of the fertilisers you’re feeding it with.
What is soil pH?
You’ll often read the recommendation to check soil pH, a lot of people ask me what does pH actually mean? pH is simply a measure of how acid or alkaline a substance is. A pH of 6-7 is neutral, below 6 is acid, the lower the number the more acid the site. There are stacks of gardening books that list the preferred pH for specific plants.
What soil pH is best for grass?
The good news for most lawns is that they will tolerate a fairly wide range of soil pH. Anywhere from about pH 5.5 to 7 is great.
How does lime help reduce soil acidity?
A hungry lawn needs feeding but if your pH is not correct it simply won’t take what you feed it. Lime is very alkaline so helps by reducing soil acidity which in turn improves the uptake of major lawn nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium. It also provides a great source of calcium and magnesium for the lawn and helps improve water penetration.
How to test the acidity of your soil
By doing a pH test on your site or underlay you can determine the acidity/alkalinity. With a simple soil test kit it’s really easy to do yourself. You can easily purchase soil test kits online from the Lawn Store.
How to apply lime to your soil or lawn
The amount of lime you should use depends on the acidity of your soil. Approximately 100-250g per m2 is the typical range. Ideally mix the lime into your soil and turf underlay prior to laying your turf. Otherwise, spread it on the top and water in well.
It’s well worth taking the time to reduce your soil acidity to get the lushest, healthiest lawn you can. Find your local Lawn Solutions Australia member grower for expert advice.
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