Should you Lime Bermuda Grass - Knowledgebase Question

Fort Mill, So
Question by vasiliou
September 24, 2009
I have been told not to Lime your yard if you have Bermuda Grass? Is this correct? I am getting brown spots from my dog when she urinates on the lawn, and I have been told in the past if you Lime regulary this will stop the brown spots from appearing. My yard was sodded with a Bermuda hybrid Tifway 419.
Steven Vasiliou

Answer from NGA
September 24, 2009


I wouldn't lime your bermuda unless a soil test indicates a need for lime. Lime might help neutralize the salts in dog urine but compost will do the same. If you can dilute the urine as soon as possible by hosing down the area, that will help, as well. To get rid of the burned areas, you may need to dig out the bare or brown spots, mix in some compost, then overseed or cut plugs from a healthy area of the turf to install in the bare spots.

As a general guideline, before applying lime, it is best to have your soil tested. Your Local Extension Service may provide soil testing services for free, or at a low cost. Test results will indicate any nutrient deficiencies, and the amount of lime needed to correct soil pH. Be sure to purchase "pelletized" lime. Pelletized lime is much easier to broadcast with a rotary spreader, and it activates instantly upon irrigation or rainfall.

Typically, the more clay and organic content in your soil, the more lime you will need to correct the pH. Sandy soils usually require less lime, if any.

In the absence of a soil test, and if the soil in your region is typically prone to being acidic, an application of at least 40 pounds of pelletized lime per 1,000 square feet is recommended. After spreading lime, water the lawn to wash the particles off the grass leaves and into the soil.

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