Marketing Acidic Sand

Discussion in 'Organic Lawn Care' started by jimgreensmiths, Jan 20, 2004.

  1. jimgreensmiths

    jimgreensmiths LawnSite Member
    Messages: 1

    I own a very unique iron sulfate sand with no heavy metals. I would like to market the product in bags. I am new to this group and have read most of the post with great interest and would like to address some of the comments in light of the sands use. The purpose is to find if the group feels the sand has a market.
    Topdressing with sand causing cementing of clay.

    The sand I have is very fine and quite reactive, we have topdressed golf fairways with the material with no problem at one ton per acre, the acidity of the sand on calcareous soil creates calcium sulfate (gypsum) which improves the soil structure. However it is a sand and sand clay raios must be observed so light amounts can not be mixed with clays.

    Fungi to Bacteria Ratios

    These ratios are dominated by a number of factors, pH being among the most important. The sand is a living sand with the bacteria Thiobacillus Ferroxidans using the iron sulfate as a food source. The sand contains about 1% carbon as graphite which supports nitrogen fixing bacteria, test have shown the sand to have about 1% nitrogen. High pH soils can be dominated by bad Fungi, phymatotrichium ominvorim ( take all) and many others. Research shows that acidity and organic acids help control disease causing fungi.

    I have used the sand in sand bags where water can penetrate the bag and allow the tea created in the bag to move into the root zone of bedding plants with great success on trees and bushes planted in alkaline soil. I have also drilled holes in the root zone of affected trees with good results with 2" and larger holes. Small holes allow the sand to increase in pH and become neutralized where biological activity seems to slow dramatically.

    Using the sand straight and in mixes I have been able to produce beautiful azeleas, rhodendrons, and alkaline sensitive tropicals in highly alkaline waters of Texas. The material is in Burnet Tx in the heart of alkaline Texas.

    Those were the post I found most applicable and I hope by discussing the application I have explained the sand somewhat.

    Any comments or thoughts appreciated, ands thanks for a great group.

  2. Dchall_San_Antonio

    Dchall_San_Antonio LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 327

    Hi Jim,
    Sounds like you have quite a product on your hands there. I'm going to suggest you call Malcolm Beck at Garden-Ville in San Antonio. If anyone is already familiar with your sand it would be him. He'll tell you what the sand is worth. If Malcolm is not familiar with it, he most likely will want to be. He'll probably suggest you take him a hundred pounds or so that he can experiment with. If he likes the results, he'll package and market the sand for you.

    You can find Malcolm at and at

    Good luck!

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