How does lime work?

Acidic soil, whether acidic from fertilizer applications, rainfall, or organic matter decomposing, is technically the result of chemical reactions. Calcium and other important nutrients are constantly being leached out of the soil, and Hydrogen and other acidic nutrients are being added, causing a constant decline in soil pH.

Lime, in its most pure form, is made up largely of Calcium. Calcium Carbonate is a base (the opposite of an acid), and therefore, has a neutralizing effect on acid. Similar to how antacids work by neutralizing stomach acid, putting lime on your lawn or garden neutralizes acid in the soil.

Lime, therefore, actually creates a chemical reaction within the soil, to make the soil more alkaline, or less acidic. Because the majority of nutrients needed by plants are most readily available at a neutral soil pH, the neutralization caused by liming unlocks soil nutrients, making them most available for plant uptake (see nutrient pH chart). Most plants prefer a neutral soil, and will do best at a pH between 6.2-7.0. Liming helps bring a low pH into this neutral range, giving plants the best opportunity to flourish.Aside from its neutralizing effects, calcium is also a vital nutrient in supporting healthy plant growth. Just as humans need Calcium for healthy teeth and bones, plants need Calcium for healthy growth. Calcium is the 2nd most prevalent element found in plant tissue, helping in cell wall formation, cell division, and growth in general. Nutrient Availability at Soil pH Levels

Lime products for lawn and garden can be found at your local garden center. For an easy to use, fast acting lime, ask for Encap’€™s Fast Acting Lime. Encap’€™s Fast Acting Lime is AST enhanced to hold unlocked nutrients in the root zone where plants need them most. Find it at your local lawn and garden center!

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