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why lime?
aluminum toxicity
nutrient availability
balanced fertility
 
aluminum toxicity
Raising the soil PH reduces the solubility of aluminum. Even at low concentrations, these ions can be toxic to most plants. As a result of low soil PH, aluminum toxicity is a major factor in limiting crop production throughout the world. Liming the soil reduces the solubility of aluminum removing it from the soil solution.
nutrient availability

The availability of most nutrients is greatest between a soil PH of 5.6 to 6.5. In temperate regions of the world, a soil PH of 6.2 to 7.0 is considered best for crop production.

Lime improves the physical condition of the soil, resulting in greater root proliferation and nutrient uptake. Liming an acid soil to a proper soil PH improves the fertility and physical characteristics of the soil. It also increases microbial activity, effectiveness of some herbicides and, ultimately, crop production.

balanced fertility
Maintaining an optimum nutrient balance can be accomplished by soil testing on a regular basis and applying lime, nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, sulfur and micro nutrients as required. Increased nutrient availability and crop production result when lime is included as a part of a total nutrient management program.
 
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