Fall is officially here. With fall comes the start of your yard clean-up and the end of your lawn care services. Some fall services that help cool-season grass flourish include aeration, seeding, a pre-winterizer, and a fall limestone application.
When it comes to treating your lawn, it can be a bit overwhelming on exactly what products are going to help give your lawn the best-looking results come spring. Let’s talk about why limestone is recommended and exactly how it transforms your lawn.
Limestone is an application used to level out the soils pH and improve the health of your plants and lawn. Applying a lime treatment will help your lawn recover the nutrients that may have been lost due to the acidity and can help repair the damage caused by it. It is beneficial to add lime to your soil in the fall because with the weather changes we go through in the winter and fall months, it helps break down the lime and starts beginning to raise the soil’s pH.
Think of it this way, when you take an antacid for your stomach, it helps to neutralize excess acid in the stomach. This is how the limestone helps your soil. The calcium in lime is a base that creates a chemical reaction with the soul and makes it more alkaline (less acidic).
Does My Lawn Need Lime?
Although you may now understand the benefits of adding a lime treatment to your lawn, you may still be asking yourself, how do I know if my lawn needs lime?
The most important thing to remember is that lawns need a limestone application when the soil pH has no nutritional value. For your lawn to thrive, you want your soils pH levels ranging anywhere around 6 to 7. If the soil is too acidic, a limestone application will help raise the pH level and get your lawn back to a neutral level.
You can easily find out your soil’s pH level with a soil test, but without having a soil test done, if you see your grass is starting to die, or become yellow and failing to respond after receiving a fertilizer treatment, that can also be a sign that your soil is acidic and needs an application.
Other signs you may need an application is if you’ve recently experienced a drought and your lawn is unable to recover or you received too much rainfall. Too much rainfall can remove the basic nutrients, leaving your lawn with acidic pH levels.
When applying limestone, there are several factors to consider. The soil moisture is very important regarding the reaction of the limestone.
Because of this, testing the soil every few years is important because limestone requires soil moisture, and it takes time for the soil to neutralize. Soil pH can fluctuate during the year and is the lowest in the fall because of plant removal and fertilizer applications.
For the best result, it is most beneficial to use a product that releases steadily over a period of time. Although it may take longer to raise the pH level and to see results, it will produce better long-lasting results in the end.
When looking to receive a limestone application, some products may show to be “fast-acting.” Fast-acting solutions are usually more powerful than a product that works steadily over time. Because of this, your lawn can receive too much product at once. If too much calcium is absorbed at once, it can push the soil too far to be alkaline, causing plants to not receive and absorb enough nutrients to grow and be healthy.
Given this information, usually the best time to apply lime is in the spring or the fall because of the soil. The granular product is applied with a fertilizer spreader.
If you're looking for more information on lawn care in the Cleveland, Columbus, or Northern Cincinnati areas or are simply ready to speak with someone about your lawn care needs, go to www.LoveYourLawn.com or call 866-724-4555 for a free quote today!