As we move through our autumn season, many may feel now is the time to apply lime to their lawn. But wait! Does your lawn REALLY need lime? You cannot be sure unless a soil test is first conducted.
Soil testing can provide wonderful information about the soil in which your lawn is growing. A thorough analysis will include the breakdown of the various nutrients in your soil, including your lawn’s Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium levels, making you aware of various deficiencies and/or surpluses which can be adjusted during your regular fertilization applications.
The other big factor a soil test will reveal is the pH level of your soil. The amount of acid in the soil, or the soil pH, is a major factor in determining your lawn’s health. If the level is above or below the optimal range of 6.0 – 6.8, nutrients become “locked” in the soil. Small changes in a soil pH can have large effects on nutrient availability and the health of your lawn. If your lawn pH is below 6.0, your lawn will definitely benefit from a lime application. However, if your soil pH is above 6.8, your lawn would then need an application of sulfur to lower the pH of the soil. Applying lime in this situation would actually being doing your lawn a disservice.
A wonderful time to apply soil amendments to the lawn, such as pelletized lime or sulfur, is in the late fall/early winter. Lawn Cure encourages you to get your soil testing done now, so you can be prepared to apply your soil amendments later this year!