Besides sunlight and water, your plants need high-quality soil that has the right pH level to help them in absorbing the nutrients properly. Generally, most plants work well with a pH rating between 6.0 and 7.5. However, some plant species may be more particular about how high or low the acidity in soil should be in helping them grow. That will require you to raise the soil’s pH levels organically.
Increasing your soil’s pH levels
The first step in increasing the soil’s pH levels is to perform a litmus test to check the soil’s current pH level. Doing so allows you to have a starting point on how much you’ll need to raise its acidity. What you’ll do next is to purchase amendment material to mix with your soil.
There are numerous ways to increase your soil’s pH content. Choosing what works best for your purposes is a matter of knowing how much you’ll need and how accessible it is to purchase.
In this article, we will share a three-step guide to help you in raising your soil’s acidity:
1. Choose the right material
Depending on your soil’s needs, you can choose from three different amendments: limestone, wood ashes, and baking soda.
- Limestone: The amount of limestone you’ll purchase will need to vary depending on the type of soil that you own. Depending on the surface area of your gardening lot, you will need to take note of the amount you’ll add. For your reference, a lot of 100 square feet requires two pounds of limestone for sandy soils, 3.5 pounds for loamy soils, and five points for clay soils.
- Wood ashes: Wood ashes can raise your soil’s pH levels quickly. However, it isn’t sustainable because the effects are only short term. Make sure that the ashes you use aren’t from chemically treated wood since they can contaminate your soil’s natural composition. You should also avoid exposing wood ashes to germinating seeds as it can halt their growth.
- Baking soda: Using baking soda solutions is a popular DIY method for gardeners to increase the soil’s pH levels. Although they also offer short-term effects similar to wood ashes, they are relatively harmless to the soil and plants. To make a solution, mix baking soda with water with a ratio of one tablespoon per gallon of water. You can adjust the ratio depending on the size of your garden plot.
2. Mix the amendments to your soil
After choosing your preferred amendment, you need to mix it with the soil evenly. You can do that with a shovel or tiller to make sure that it is thoroughly spread out. Dig at least six inches deep in mixing your amendment into the soil so it can meet the plants’ roots.
3. Water your garden plot regularly
After mixing, you need to water the area to help the soil to adjust its pH levels. Keep in mind that you should water your soil regularly, but be careful not to overwater since it can cause minerals and nutrients to seep out of the soil.
After applying your amendment to the soil, make sure to regularly check the soil’s acidity to check on its pH status. It will help you in making sure that you’ve used the correct amount or if its pH levels are still sustained after some time has passed. Keep in mind that other factors can affect the acidity levels, such as weather and fertilisers, so it would be best if you test your soil before it can lead to stunting your plants’ growth.
Depending on your plants’ needs, you have to make sure that they receive the right minerals and nutrients to keep them strong and healthy. If you’re looking to buy specialised root enhancers and flowering boosters in the UK, browse through our online catalogue of products and find the perfect match for our gardening needs! Shop now!