Lawn Care Tips Using Lime

A lush, green, healthy lawn is a homeowner's or gardener's dream. To reach this goal, regular maintenance is necessary, such as creating a watering cycle, mowing and fertilizing. An additional step to create a healthy lawn is to add lime to balance out the soil's pH or strengthen the grass roots. To determine the pH of your soil (which determines the acidity of alkalinity), test it with a kit obtained from a local gardening store. If your pH level is below 7.0, then your soil is considered acidic, and if it's above that number, it is considered alkaline. An ideal pH level is between 6.0 and 7.0. Lime can be used as bulky oyster shells to finely ground to liquid form, depending on how you want to apply it to your lawn.

Benefits of Adding Lime

Adding lime to your lawn will repair damage in the root system, restore depleted nutrients, improve the growth of the grass and make it healthier overall. Since adding lime balances out the pH, your lawn will also have a lesser chance of thatch or nutrient loss. In short, it restores the natural beauty of it and strengthens the root systems, making it easier to create a green lush lawn.

Choosing a Type of Lime to Use

Lime for lawns comes in two types of applications: dolomitic and calcitic. Although both provide calcium carbonate (nutrition for grass and an acid neutralizer), they have some differences. Dolomitic limestone provides magnesium, so use this type if your pH test shows your lawn is deficient in this mineral. Calcitic limestone doesn't have magnesium, so use this if your lawn isn't deficient. Always follow the directions on the lime application exactly, so you use the proper amount for what you want to improve in your lawn.

Choosing an Application Method

Limestone comes in a couple of different applications for lawns. For example, finely ground limestone works the fastest if you know exactly what results you want for your lawn, but if applied slightly wrong, it can easily burn the grass. Coarsely ground limestone improves the lawn more slowly, so you can tailor it to raise the pH to an exact range. Look for a product stating that 50 percent or more of the ground limestone will pass through a 100 sieve.

Keywords: lawn care, applying lawn lime, lawn lime application

About this Author

Lauren Wise has more than eight years' experience as a writer, editor, copywriter and columnist. She specializes in food, wine, music and pop culture. Her writing has appeared in various magazines, including "Runway," "A2Z," "Scottsdale Luxury Living" and "True West." Wise holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Arizona State University.