If your plants are suffering from slow growth, looking leggy or unproductive, then soil pH may be the reason. It also affects the flavor of crops. First of all, find out whether your soil is acidic, neutral or alkaline. If it is not according to the plants you are growing you will need to amend it.
And, here in this article you will learn how to change your soil pH level at home in an easy and inexpensive way.
Also Read: How to check soil pH at home
The soil pH is a measure of the acidity or alkalinity in soils. A pH level below 7 is acidic and above 7 is alkaline.
*Most of the plants prefer neutral pH (pH level ranging from 6 – 7.5).
Lowering pH level to Make Soil Acidic
Adding manure is the best way to make your soil acidic. Manure not only lowers soil pH but also provides other necessary components, add microorganisms and good insects, it improves soil texture, makes it porous, require for healthy plant growth. However, lowering soil pH with manure can be a slow process.
2. Used Tea or Coffee Grounds
Used tea or coffee grounds can lower your soil pH, although it can’t do a big change in soil pH, as most of its acidity gets removed after brewing. But you should use it constantly to see some changes. It also contains many nutrients and trace elements like Nitrogen, Potassium, Phosphorous, Magnesium and Copper, which are essential for healthy growth of every plant. Using it also deter insects like fire ants and snail away.
Also Read: How to Use Coffee Grounds in the Garden
This is the fastest way to lower your soil pH. Sulfur can be applied in higher quantity if plants are not planted in soil. Follow product instructions before application. There are different kinds of sulfur available but Aluminum sulfate works instantly as it dissolves in soil but it should be used with caution because it can cause aluminum toxicity in some plants.
Raising pH Level to Make Soil Slightly Acidic or Alkaline
1. Wood Ash
If your soil is Acidic then wood ash is the best option for you to increase soil pH. Wood ash also contains potassium that is used by plants for fruit production. It is good for vegetables and fruits. However, there are things to remember before using it. Don’t use cardboard ash. Do not use wood ash with urea because it releases ammonia gas in contact with wood ash. Do not use it in the soil where you sowed seeds.
Adding limestone to raise your soil pH is another good option, more effective than wood ash. But you do not get the added benefits of trace elements available in the wood ash. If you have a big garden, use drop spreader to add it in soil, in a small garden simply add it manually.
Points to Remember
- Don’t apply any of these at the same time with a fertilizer in the same spreader.
- If you are not sure about the exact level of your soil pH, don’t add too much quantity of any of the contents.
- Areas that receive good rainfall and have cold climate have slightly acidic to acidic soil.
- Areas having less rainfall, remains dry or come under tropics have neutral to alkaline soil.