Clippings by GWTaz

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RE: pH of compost too alkaline (Follow-Up #11)

posted by: ericwi on 01.29.2014 at 11:07 am in Soil Forum

I have re-read this string of comments, and I also checked out the LaMotte soil test kit, by visiting their website. If you used tap water to prepare your soil sample, it is quite possible that your tap water has pH between 7 and 8. In other words, the pH of the water used changed the pH of the soil, so the resulting reading was close to that of the water used. In the past I have used commercial steam distilled water for soil pH tests, but I found that this source actually had pH = 7.1, so I began using reverse-osmosis water from a vending machine in our local food co-op, here in Madison. If your well water has some dissolved limestone, then it is providing you with both calcium and magnesium, and therefore it is likely good for your health. So I am not saying that you have bad water, however, it may be throwing off your soil pH test results.


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clipped on: 01.29.2014 at 03:28 pm    last updated on: 01.29.2014 at 03:28 pm

RE: pH of compost too alkaline (Follow-Up #9)

posted by: kimmsr on 01.28.2014 at 06:32 am in Soil Forum

While most all plants will do most bestest growing in a soil with a pH in the 6.2 to 6.8 range and this range is where most all soil nutrients are most readily available, plants can grow quite well in soils with a higher or lower soil pH, especially if the amount of organic matter in that soil is adequate.
I would not be very concerned about a soil pH of 7.4 and not at all concerned if the pH of my compost was 7.4, as tested by a very accurate pH meter and not a cheap model.


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clipped on: 01.29.2014 at 03:27 pm    last updated on: 01.29.2014 at 03:27 pm

RE: pH of compost too alkaline (Follow-Up #8)

posted by: toxcrusadr on 01.27.2014 at 01:55 pm in Soil Forum

Just because they prefer 6.5 does not mean they will be sick at 7 or even 7.5. Plants have a range they will grow in.

I've had peonies that did great in pH 7+ soil. Eventually they got shaded out by trees. They do need sun. And we get some kind of blight around here in the hot humid summer weather. Leaves get brown spots and eventually die off.


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clipped on: 01.29.2014 at 03:22 pm    last updated on: 01.29.2014 at 03:22 pm

pH of compost too alkaline

posted by: GWTaz on 01.24.2014 at 10:07 pm in Soil Forum

Hi...just found this website and am loving it. I have a farm with horses and am a florist so grow predominantly perineiis (sp). I have spent the past 5+ years adding truckloads of leaf mulch and composted horse manure to my flower beds. I have done a series of pH tests and realized that the compost and leaf mulch are making my beds too alkaline. I would like them to be around 6-6.5 but they are now more like 7-8. This is way too high for growing peonies and dahlias (not to mention my blueberry bushes); so guess I need to amend soil with sulfer or aluminum sulfate? There is snow on the ground now so wondered if I could put some sulfer around the drip line of my plants. since my beds are already planted (not dahlias...they are out for the winter) Suggestions on the best way to amend the soil? Can't wait to hear back. So excited!

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clipped on: 01.25.2014 at 10:48 pm    last updated on: 01.25.2014 at 10:49 pm

RE: pH of compost too alkaline (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: kimmsr on 01.25.2014 at 06:34 am in Soil Forum

Many people find that when a soil has adequate levels of organic matter it does have a pH in the 7.0 range. Mine went from 5.7 pH to 7.2 pH in about 4 years without any lime added. I have not seen any real problem due to that soil pH and all of the plants, annuals, biennials, and perennials grow and blossom quite well with very few insect pest or plant disease problems.
Where Blueberries, and other plants such as Rhododendrons and Azaleas, are to grow adjustments may well need to be made, although the Rhodies and Azaleas seem to do quite well in a soil well amended with organic matter with a higher pH.
If you do opt to add sulfur to lower the soil pH be sure to add enough to do what needs to be done and not just a bit sprinkled here and there. A good, reliable soil test is in order here.


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clipped on: 01.25.2014 at 10:48 pm    last updated on: 01.25.2014 at 10:49 pm