The Q&A Archives: alkaline soil

Question: my gardern soil is alkaline. new scott kentuky blue grass seed did not germinate. the soil test came out to alkaline. books recommends to use soil sulpur powder. where can i find sulpur powder and how to apply it on soil.

Answer: Keep in mind that grass will tolerate quite a range of pH, a reading as high as 7.5 would still be acceptable if not quite ideal. I am a little surprised you would have alkaline soil in your area, I believe it is typically on the acid side. If you had just recently limed, or if the area has been over-limed then perhaps you could get an alkaline reading. I would strongly suggest you consult with your local county extension and see if they can help you interpret the test results and perhaps double check your sampling technique. They should be able to help you interpret the soil test results and recommend how to amend it if needed.

If your seeding failed, it may be due to the soil temperature and weather conditions being too cold and/or too wet causing the seed to rot, or the soil temperature may still be on the cold side for grass seed to germinate. Kentucky bluegrass seed can take 21 days to germinate under ideal conditions, so it may be that you could still see results depending on when you seeded. Your county extension should also be able to help you troubleshoot the seeding.

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