Calcium Products - Andrew Hoiberg, Ph.D.

Calcium Products - Andrew Hoiberg, Ph.D.

Andrew Hoiberg, Ph.D.

Andrew Hoiberg, Ph.D.

Applying SuperCal Products on Snow Covered Ground

 

We are often asked about making application of our products on snow-covered ground. Applications in the late fall and early winter should have the same types of considerations as they do in other parts of the year.

When considering application timing, water should always be the preeminent issue. Water influences the movement of soil applied inputs, and when water has potential to run (and not infiltrate), then perhaps applications should be delayed. These events are not always easy to predict, so using your best judgment is the way to go.

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Carboxylic acid . . . is it worth the price?

Carboxylic acids are added to some gypsum products to act as a ‘complexing agent.’ One of the claims is that these acids make the calcium ‘more available’ for plant uptake.

For the calcium and sulfur to be plant available it needs to be in the soil solution. Using a simple test, one can determine how soluble a product is. Our research has shown that SuperCal SO4 is more soluble than products containing expensive carboxylic acids.

 

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Soil acidity

Within any given soil, there are two states of acidity that need to be accounted for before liming recommendations can be made. First is the active acidity, which indicates the current pH status of the soil. Active acidity accounts for the H+ ions in the soil/water solution that the laboratory measures. What active acidity doesn’t account for, however, is the reserve, or potential acidity. Think of a swimming pool that has a few people in it, those people represent the active acidity. Now, imagine that there are more people outside the pool, just waiting to jump in after some of the others leave. Those folks represent the potential acidity. When we determine how much lime we need to neutralize the acidity in the soil, it is really the potential acidity that needs to be accounted for. To neutralize the active acidity is easy and requires little lime, but the potential acidity can be a major problem to neutralize if it warrants such action.

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