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Time to lime?

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by Meadowbrook, Feb 7, 2006.

  1. Meadowbrook

    Meadowbrook LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 467

    Well, as long as I've been doing this and until today, I was never asked this question. I was asked if I can lime early this season rather than in the fall when I usually do. Can I?

    I don't want the lime to affect the Nitrogen levels of my spring applications. Will it? Usually I lime in the fall because it has several months to break down into the grass and by the time the spring application rolls around the lime is pretty well broken down and used up. So, I'm asking for some really quick advice. thanks guys.

  2. Lawnmasters

    Lawnmasters LawnSite Member
    Messages: 180

    I try to get my customers to lime each fall and spring. Our soil around here is very heavy clay, most of the time it requires more lime than the soil will absorb in one application, so I say put down two applications per year. Pelletized Dolomitic Lime.

    Good luck with your program this year.
  3. K&L Landscaping

    K&L Landscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 657

    That's what I do also. We also have clay here and it is very sour soil. My program has worked well because the majority of my properties are running around 6.3-6.6 ph.
  4. Branchland

    Branchland LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 354

    I try to put it down in the winter. Gives me something to and makes a few bucks. Just finished mine up last week. But I do some customers when ever in the year. Most of those are like one time customers or new ones and I'm wanting to go ahead and get started. But I believe you can put it out anytime. So I've been told. Never had a problem.
  5. The Ranger

    The Ranger LawnSite Member
    from NE Ohio
    Messages: 208

    Lime can be applied any time of year, although spring and fall is usually better. Does anyone do a soil test before application? Heavy clay soils don't determine PH. Soil test will tell if lime is needed and how much per M.
  6. upidstay

    upidstay LawnSite Bronze Member
    from CT
    Messages: 1,554

    I put lime down whenever we have the time. As long as the ground isn't frozen, do it.
  7. Turfdoctor1

    Turfdoctor1 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 707

    I'm with Ranger here. Seems kind of silly to be applying lots of lime if soil tests don't say that you need to. Good for you, because you make money either way, but not exactly agronomically or ethically sound.
  8. sheshovel

    sheshovel LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,112

    correct..indisriminately applying lime no matter what yearly is not a good method of turf management.You need to see if lime is required first by testing the soil.
  9. Lawnmasters

    Lawnmasters LawnSite Member
    Messages: 180

    In my area, North West Tennessee, I have done hundreds of soil tests over the years. ALLWAYS needs lime. also, you can walk along and look at the surface of the ground, if it is growing moss, it is acidic. You can charge someone for a soil test if you don't know the soil your working with, but if you have worked with the same soil for 15-16 years, you should know what it's going to need. But this is just the soil in my area, your's may be different from lawn to lawn. In our area you can go for miles and find the exact same soil structure. Unless the customer has been routinely putting it down, its going to be needed.
  10. garydale

    garydale LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 813

    Always get a soil test first.

    We lime all year as a fill in on the schedule.(pelletized)

    Good rule of thumb on lime and soil Ph:
    The Ph level generally goes down about 1/4 point per season due to fertilizers,oganic matter breakdown,acid rain etc.
    Farmers knowing this would lime every 4 years to keep Ph up.(50 lbs, per K)

    In lawn maintenance we apply 15 lbs. every year to keep Ph at best level.
    This is done primarily to charge for one more treatment per season. I prefer this to keep the soil Ph reasonably stable as opposed to "feast&famine" on the four year cycle.

    Keep lime and fert. applications two weeks apart so lime doesn't nutralize the fertilizer.

    Tip: Always blow every speck of lime off pavement.Wet lime makes a hell of a mess.

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