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Soil test immediately after the harvest. Then apply aglime in fall.

Aglime reacts at varying rates under different soil and weather conditions. Best results occur when it is applied in fall to assure needed reduction of acidity by planting time.

Crop response to aglime is greatest when incorporated. If you fall plow, fall application is your best alternative - another reason to soil test early.

Agricultural Research 2011

Brief Summary

In 2011, a replicated trial was established on similar acidic soil (pH 4.7) to assess the yield response of 4 varieties of potatoes and one variety of soybeans to 3 lime treatments (calcitic, dolomitic, Hydra-lime) and non-limed check. For observation purposes, indicators crops of beets, barley, canola and sweet corn were planted. All lime products were applied at 2 tonnes per acre, prior to planting, and the lime were rototilled into the top 6” of soil.

In the soybean trial, the dolomitic lime gave the highest yield of beans. When compared to the dolomitic lime treatment, on a percent basis, the yields were as follows: check 46%, calcitic 82%, and hydra lime 68%. Nodulation (N fixing bacteria) were abundant on soybean plant roots in lime treated plots and were negligible in plant roots growing in non-limed plots. This may have affected available nitrogen for protein production in plants. On a dry matter basis, the percent crude protein was 40.4 % in the check, 42.4 in the hydra lime, 43.1 % in the dolomitic and 43.6 in the calcitic lime treatment. Concentrations of P and K in soybeans only varied slightly among lime treatments.

The biological yield (weight of all tubers) of the four varieties of potatoes increased in response to all three lime treatments. A higher percentage of small potatoes (< 2inch diameter) occurred in the non-limed treatment for all four varieties. Similar to the 2010 trial, the variety Shepody and Yukon Gold gave substantial increased biological and marketable yields following application of the three types of lime. Although the Pr 07-11-1 seedling gave the best growth and highest yields in the non-limed plots, it also gave higher biological and pay yields in the limed plots.

The incidence of hollow heart/brown center was low in Shepody and Pr 07-11-1, moderate in Yukon Gold and extremely high for Russet Burbank. The application of three different types of lime did not reduce the high frequency of HH in Russet Burbank.

There have been some debates/ misunderstandings in the farm community if applications of lime will affect crop growth in the season of application. In all crops evaluated, plant growth was much less in the non-limed plots. In both years (2010, 2011), lime “worked” in the first year to improve growth of all crops. The soil test in the spring of 2011 showed a pH of 4. 7 and the recommended rate of lime to raise the pH to 6.0 was 5 tonnes per hectare (2 tonnes per acre). When calcitic or dolomitic lime was added at 2 tonnes per acre in 2010, the pH did increase to the 6.0-6.2 range by December of the same year. Soil samples collected in midsummer 2011from plots limed in the spring of 2011, revealed the pH to be 4.6 for check, 5.7 for calcitic, 5.2 for dolomitic and 5.0 for Hydra lime. Soil samples collected in December revealed the pH to be 6.0 for calcitic, 6.2 for dolomitic, 5.5 for hydra lime and 4.9 for non-limed check. Although Hydra lime was only tested in 2011, it did not raise the soil pH as much as calcitic and dolimitic lime, when the soil was tested mid-summer and again in December. Among the three lime treatments, the growth of indicator crops (canola, beets barley) was noticeably less vigorous in the Hydra lime treatment.

Lime is often overlooked when growers are planning their fertility programs. On acidic soils, the correct use of lime can be more important than fertilization practices with N, P and K. This research has shown that some crops (barley, beets, and canola) will not grow in acidic soil even though adequate fertilizer was added. Although soybeans and potatoes will grow in acidic soil, liming substantially improved crop yields in the year of lime application.

Click here to download the full report on Lime Trial in PDF format.