5 Reasons to Use Limestone in Your Soil


| 12/8/2016 9:25:00 AM


Tags: gardening, limestone, soil, bobbi peterson, pennsylvania,

Bobbi PetersonAgricultural limestone and dolomite limestone are the two types of lime that gardeners and farmers use to improve soil conditions. Agricultural limestone (Ag lime) contains calcium, while dolomite lime contains calcium and magnesium. Both types of limestone are beneficial, but some farmers prefer to use dolomite to combat magnesium deficiencies in the plants. Here are some other benefits of lime:

Limestone Corrects the Soil pH

Chances are that the soil in your field or garden will become acidic over time due to several factors, including decomposition of organic material and erosion. Limestone raises the pH level to a neutral range beneficial to plants, typically between 5.5 and 6.5.

If the pH is acidic and below 5.5, or if the pH is alkaline and above 6.5, this will create a nutrient deficiency in your plants. You can improve the nutritional quality of your crops by using limestone in the recommended amount.

Limestone Raises the Effectiveness of Some Herbicides

The structure of the soil in your field or garden improves with the addition of limestone to correct the soil’s pH level. Due to this improvement, nutrients are better absorbed, and your plants can retain more water. Additionally, herbicides work more efficiently in a neutral pH-based environment and break down quicker.

Limestone Prevents Toxicities in the Soil

When the soil in your field or garden reaches an acidic pH level, certain nutrients such as aluminum, manganese, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus and iron elevate to toxic levels. Not only will limestone prevent the build-up of these nutrients, but it will safely improve the calcium level as well.

If you choose to use dolomite limestone, then both calcium and magnesium deficiencies will see improvement.




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