Lowering PH

A place to discuss soil fertility and soil amendments
95mmrenegade
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Re: Lowering PH

Post by 95mmrenegade » Thu Jun 28, 2018 7:47 pm

My CEC is low as well. When you say spoon feed, please elaborate.

95mmrenegade
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Re: Lowering PH

Post by 95mmrenegade » Thu Jun 28, 2018 7:48 pm

Greendoc wrote:
Thu Jun 28, 2018 1:53 pm
No need to actively lower, but I would consider making Ammonium Sulfate the Nitrogen source. Low in everything is actually the ideal situation.
I will read up. What are the benefits.

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Re: Lowering PH

Post by Ridgerunner » Thu Jun 28, 2018 8:22 pm

My CEC is low as well.
Is it a secret? :D
When you say spoon feed, please elaborate.
Is your soil sandy?
Spoon feeding is a method for keeping nutrients available in very low CEC and very sandy soils by making small applications of fertilizer more often. Often this will be half the monthly amount of fertilizer every 2 weeks but some will even break the usual monthly amount into quarter amounts and apply every week. Some people even spoon feed to avoid roller coaster nutrient swings in high CEC clay soils. Other alternatives is to use slow release fertilizer sources or foliar apps.

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Re: Lowering PH

Post by Mr McTurf » Thu Jun 28, 2018 8:43 pm

I am relatively new here so I don’t know if this has been discussed before, but it is my understanding that besides the parent material of your soil, one of the predominant influences on your soil ph is the ph of your irrigation water. Any attempt to lower your ph may be difficult or short lived if you continue to irrigate with a high ph water source. If you don’t irrigate, then disregard.

So, consider testing your water. It may be beyond what most home owners would consider, but I have worked with an acid injection system to use sulfuric acid to lower irrigation water ph. At a former job, not at my house, and will speak from personal experience that it can be dangerous.

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Re: Lowering PH

Post by Turfguy93 » Fri Jun 29, 2018 11:48 am

Mr McTurf wrote:
Thu Jun 28, 2018 8:43 pm
I am relatively new here so I don’t know if this has been discussed before, but it is my understanding that besides the parent material of your soil, one of the predominant influences on your soil ph is the ph of your irrigation water. Any attempt to lower your ph may be difficult or short lived if you continue to irrigate with a high ph water source. If you don’t irrigate, then disregard.

So, consider testing your water. It may be beyond what most home owners would consider, but I have worked with an acid injection system to use sulfuric acid to lower irrigation water ph. At a former job, not at my house, and will speak from personal experience that it can be dangerous.
+1 the lake that we irrigate out of at the course has a ph of 8 and guess what the ph of the soil is on greens. You guessed it 8

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Re: Lowering PH

Post by Ridgerunner » Fri Jun 29, 2018 8:10 pm

@Mr McTurf
Very salient point. :thumbup:
Unfortunately, as you point out, most homeowners don't have the ability to correct this.

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w0lfe
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Re: Lowering PH

Post by w0lfe » Mon Jul 02, 2018 6:39 am

So besides the high PH causing iron to bind in the soil, what other reasons are there for lowering PH? Mine is high, and my grass is very lush. I just wonder if it would get even darker if iron wouldn't bind up in the soil

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Re: Lowering PH

Post by Ridgerunner » Mon Jul 02, 2018 8:37 am

w0lfe wrote:
Mon Jul 02, 2018 6:39 am
So besides the high PH causing iron to bind in the soil, what other reasons are there for lowering PH? Mine is high, and my grass is very lush. I just wonder if it would get even darker if iron wouldn't bind up in the soil
Contrary to common perception, it's not as though anything above a pH of 7+ makes metal micros (or P) unavailable as if toggling a switch. It's a continuum, as pH rises, they can become more unavailable (tied up), but a number of sources state that they don't become critically deficient until pH rises above the low 8s. Turf root exudates are very efficient at extracting soil nutrients and the exudate has a chelating component that keep extracted nutrients available for plant uptake. Although not foolproof, roots also have a gatekeeper component to regulate which nutrients get absorbed based on plant process requirements.
On the other hand, if you're trying to produce foie gras...

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Re: Lowering PH

Post by Kballen11 » Wed Feb 13, 2019 9:42 pm

I just had my soil tested and the pH is 8.2. I am planning on doing monthly citric acid treatments. Should I consider ammonium sulfate or sulfur coated urea as my nitrogen source? I used milorganite all last summer and enjoyed the look of my grass, should I not apply milorganite any more? I am planning on adding some sulfur at some point. Any tips on what to apply and when to apply would be greatly appreciated. Sounds like lowering the ph might not even be a reality. If so, what are my options to maintain the best looking turf at such a high ph?

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Re: Lowering PH

Post by Greendoc » Wed Feb 13, 2019 10:10 pm

AS for sure. You liked how Millorganite looked because you managed to saturate the soil with so much Iron that the grass was forced to turn green. Lot of material to apply to get that result.

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Re: Lowering PH

Post by Kballen11 » Thu Feb 14, 2019 10:14 am

AS over sulfur coated urea @Greendoc ? I am planning on spraying FAS as well so I am not too worried about losing iron by not using milo.

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Re: Lowering PH

Post by Kballen11 » Thu Feb 14, 2019 10:29 am

@Greendoc I have done some more reading on here and sound like others mix citric acid when they spray their FAS. Is this something you recommend? I would like to do this if it is effective.

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Re: Lowering PH

Post by Greendoc » Thu Feb 14, 2019 1:17 pm

The N from Sulfur coat Urea is not that efficient at high pH. More green is gotten from AS. The way I would treat a lawn like yours is spray with 1 lb AS 1 lb Citric, 2 oz FEAture, 1 lb 20-20-20 soluble per 1000 sq ft. You are going to need a good sprayer to put this down.

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Re: Lowering PH

Post by Kballen11 » Thu Feb 14, 2019 1:33 pm

@Greendoc I have a chapin backpack sprayer. Will it suffice? Is this a once a month treatment?

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Re: Lowering PH

Post by Greendoc » Thu Feb 14, 2019 1:37 pm

This is either once a month or else even better twice a month using half the rates. The sprayer should be able to handle it if the solution is mixed well enough that there are no un dissolved particles. Do you have irrigation?

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Re: Lowering PH

Post by Kballen11 » Thu Feb 14, 2019 1:43 pm

Yes I have irrigation. I am assuming I want to water all this in immediately and maybe even spray in the evening when it is cooler as not to burn the turf. I am going to guess big box stores dont carry soluble AS or 20-20-20? Recommendations on where to find this? Would you still apply elemental sulfur twice a year? I am guessing this is all the fertilization I need. Never would have guessed I would be doing liquid fertilization but my spreader just broke so maybe it worked out in the end.

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Re: Lowering PH

Post by Greendoc » Thu Feb 14, 2019 1:52 pm

yes and yes to both. How I do my fertilizer applications is spray on and then water in. You might need to go to a Co-Op or else Ewing or Site One for the fertilizers. Is the sprayer electric?

Kballen11
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Re: Lowering PH

Post by Kballen11 » Thu Feb 14, 2019 1:58 pm

No Ewing or Site One in my area :(. How would I find info on Co-Op? The sprayer is electric, yes.
Last edited by Kballen11 on Thu Feb 14, 2019 1:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Greendoc
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Re: Lowering PH

Post by Greendoc » Thu Feb 14, 2019 2:04 pm

Where do the farmers go for fertilizer? Or if you are totally in the city, Amazon.

Kballen11
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Re: Lowering PH

Post by Kballen11 » Thu Feb 14, 2019 2:05 pm

I will do some research. What are your thoughts on elemental sulfur twice a year with this program? Too much?

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