Using Lime in Your Garden

comments (3) January 25th, 2016

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jgthegardener jgthegardener, member
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Lime can help your plants and lawn flourish by correcting the pH in your soil, but even healthy gardens can benefit from lime. Healthy lawns are more resistant to disease and use less water, taking a lot of the hassle out of maintaining your outdoor oasis. Knowing when to add lime to your garden and how much you should add can make all the difference in the success or failure of your garden. Here's the lowdown on lime.


When to Add

Fall is the perfect time to add lime to your garden unless you intend to plant late in the year. Liming your soil during the fall gives the lime time to break down and be absorbed by the soil in time for spring planting. Potatoes are one exception to this timeline: They'll need at least a year before the soil you limed is ready for them.


How Much Lime You'll Need

Most veggies prefer a slightly acidic soil with a pH of 6 to 6.5. A home pH test can tell you how far off the mark your soil is, which will give you an idea of the amount of lime you'll need to correct soil acidity. However, these tests don't take soil type into consideration. Sandy loam type soil requires only 5 pounds per 100 square feet to raise the pH one point while heavy clay soil can require 8 pounds per 100 square feet.


Applying Lime

Applying lime can be done two ways: You can till the lime into the soil, or you can sprinkle it on top. Tilling the soil with lime allows it to incorporate with the soil and break down well to change the pH. Lime applied on the surface will break down more slowly, but it takes the backbreaking work of tilling out of the equation.

Put on a dust mask to protect your lungs during lime application and begin by tilling the soil about 8 inches. Sprinkle the lime on top of the tilled soil and then continue tilling to incorporate.

Remember not to fertilize at the same time you apply lime to your garden. Lime and fertilizer can create ammonia, which even the hardiest plants can't survive.


Benefits of Lime

Lawns with a more neutral pH encourage microbes and worm activity. The worms till the soil and help organic matter break down. Worm tilling improves soil texture and the overall health of the soil.

Vegetables like peas, corn, beans, spinach and other greens will thrive in soil that has been recently limed. The new lime allows your plants to absorb and process nutrients more efficiently to grow stronger and more quickly than before. 


Correcting your soil pH can benefit your garden in countless ways. With your soil back on track, your plants can thrive without much help from you, making gardening the relaxing escape it was meant to be. 

posted in: garden lime

Comments (3)

KristaGarner writes: Nice working process.
Posted: 1:49 am on October 14th
PennyHarris writes: Awesome keep it up .. great work
Posted: 3:58 am on June 17th
LouisShelton writes: Its really awesome
Posted: 2:16 am on May 28th
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