Having a very basic or very acid soil in our garden is a serious problem. If we do not correct it, we will see most of the plants dry out for no reason (or yes) and we will have headaches where in the end we will have to adjust to the range of plants that do support the pH values of the soil .
Can it be corrected? Let’s see it.
GUIDE TO CORRECTING SOIL PH IN THE GARDEN, ACIDIC OR BASIC
A basic or alkaline soil has a high pH. Remember that greater than 7 in the pH value would be considered basic soil.
This high pH structure (above 8.5) gives the soil a low infiltration capacity, a poor structure and a slow permeability, which will be summarized in flooded soils.
In this type of land, the following deficiencies are usually present:
ACIDIC SOIL CHARACTERISTICS
An acidic soil will be one whose pH has values lower than 7 . When the nature of our soil is acidic, the following mineral deficiencies may occur:
HOW CAN WE CORRECT THE PH OF THE SOIL?
The buffer capacity of the soil is impressive. This means that huge amounts of mineral compounds are needed to correct the value a little. This is reduced to important economic costs, depending on the surface of our garden. It is only recommended to carry out these actions when there are unsustainable, very basic or very acid pH values of the soil , where the development of plants is enormously difficult.
CORRECT SOIL ACIDITY
We can use 2 elements to perform a pH correction. On the one hand, there would be quicklime and on the other, limestone. Depending on the product, different amounts are used so we are going to put it separately.
KG / HA QUICKLIME TO CORRECT THE PH
- Clay soil: 2000 kg / ha (pH 4.5 to 5.5) and 2,400 kg / ha (pH 5.5 to 6.5)
- Silty soil: 1,600 kg / ha (pH 4.5 to 5.5) and 2,100 kg / ha (pH 5.5 to 6.5)
- Loam soil: 1,100 kg / ha (pH 4.5 to 5.5) and 1,700 kg / ha (pH 5.5 to 6.5)
- Sandy soil: 850 kg / ha (pH 4.5 to 5.5) and 1,250 kg / ha (pH 5.5 to 6.5)
KG / HA OF LIMESTONE TO CORRECT THE PH
- Clay soil: 3,500 kg / ha (pH 4.5 to 5.5) and 4,250 kg / ha (pH 5.5 to 6.5)
- Silty soil: 2,750 kg / ha (pH 4.5 to 5.5) and 3,750 kg / ha (pH 5.5 to 6.5)
- Loam soil: 2,000 kg / ha (pH 4.5 to 5.5) and 3,000 kg / ha (pH 5.5 to 6.5)
- Sandy soil: 1,500 kg / ha (pH 4.5 to 5.5) and 2,250 kg / ha (pH 5.5 to 6.5)
These values are the result of raising the pH to the values provided , for a depth of soil of 15 cm and in one hectare of cultivation. It is recommended not to go above 6.5 and to do it in stages:
- If potatoes are grown, the most advisable value is a pH of 6.
- If the soil is poor, it is recommended to go up from 0.5 to 0.5.
- If the soil is fertile, it is possible to increase this value up to 7 and bring it to neutrality.
To carry out these applications we will have to take advantage of the fact that the soil does not have crops. In general, there are two well-defined seasons: autumn and spring.
In the event that it is decided to add lime to the soil in spring, a margin of at least 1 month should be left between the lime and the sowing of the crops.
KEYS TO CORRECT AN ALKALINE SOIL
Let’s see the acidifying elements as well as the amounts to add in our field:
USE OF SULFUR
When we add sulfur to the soil, it slowly oxidizes to sulfuric acid. It is often used a lot due to its low price.
Amounts of 0.5-1 kg of sulfur per square meter reduce the pH, which will be measured with pH meters until the desired value is obtained.
Its effect is slow, so every half year we will check the acidity of the soil to see if we have to add sulfur again.
This compound manages to acidify the soil faster than sulfur. It is applied by irrigation water and in amounts of 2-4 grams of iron sulfate per liter of water.
The specific dose to lower the pH by 1 degree is 4 grams per L of water, although it is advisable to apply it in adjustable amounts, to gradually lower the pH of the soil.
ACIDIC ORGANIC MATTER
Organic matter is rich in components that acidify the soil. In the case of blond soil, for example, it has a pH of 3.5 (very acidic).
Normally for the price common manure is used, in quantities of 10,000-30,000 kg / ha . Very large quantities but that will also provide nutrients to your crops.